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Kassav - Best of

(Up Music - 2006)
Sye Bwa
Ou Lé
Siwo
Réte
Zouk-la-Sé-Sel Médikaman Nou Ni
Mwen Malad Aw
Kavalié O Dam
Oh Madiana !
Bel Kréati
An Sansib
Kolé Séré
Soulajé Yo
Wèp
Mwen Alé
En Mouvmen

Creators of « zouk » music, Kassav promoted his music style for 30 years worldwide, selling millions of records. The founders, Pierre-Edouard Décimus and Freddy Marshall, wanted to modernize the music from the French West Indies: Jacob Desvarieux joined them for their first album « Love and ka dance » in 1980. And Jocelyne Beroard came for the second record « Lagué mwen ». The song « Soleil » became a hit in Martinique and in Guadeloupe, and the band expanded with Jean-Philippe Marthely, Patrick St. Eloi, Jean-Claude Naimro and Claude Vamur.

In 1983, Kassav had a hit in France with « Zouk la sé sèl médikaman nou ni » (zouk is the only medicine): it was the beginning of their international career with a lot of tours in giant stadiums. In Africa, they had a huge success: Creole artists came to sing more and more on the continent and Africans created their own « afro zouk » music. In 1987, the band released « Vini pou » for CBS and won, in 1988, the Victoire de la Musique Award for the Best Band before going back on tour: Brasil, USA, Russia, etc.

Each member of the band developed a solo career until 1995, year of the new album « Difé ». Famous in Latin America, Kassav decided to produce « Un toque latino » (1998) with their own adaptations in Spanish of their songs. Other albums were released later: « Nou la » (2000), « K’Toz » (2004) and the 15th record « All U need is zouk » in 2007.

Their « Best of » is a beautiful testimony of their heritage: Kassav did a lot to promote the Creole culture of the French West Indies. And they inspired hundreds of new artists: Tanya Saint Val, Edith Lefel, Jocelyne Labylle, Slaï, Fanny J, etc.

7 December 2008

OM

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