Baraná in Mexico, day 1, 2, 3

by stevenkamperman on 10/05/2013

(Jamsession with Cheick Tidiane Seck at the keyboard in Mama Rumba)

Just after the British airways hostess tells us the flight from London to Mexico will be ‘lovely’ (because there is practically nobody, en we can each lie down over four seats), there appears to be a problem with the wing. So there is a mechanic who comes to diagnose the problem. Although for some hours it looks like the problem can be resolved – while we are waiting it is getting hotter and hotter in the plane – but finally it appears that we all have to get out, because a new airplane will have to come in. Eight hours later we finally leave for Mexico. Luckily they give us the same kind of big plane, so that we still have plenty of space. And it is so late now – around 23.00 – that we are tired enough to catch some real sleep. So when I arrive I feel quite well, contrary to what I expected. And we still have a day to recover a bit, and enjoy the city.
Next day it appears that our percussionist Afra is supposed to be with two different bands in two different cities at the same time. The festival proposes that we play without him, but that is quite unacceptable offcourse, because it is groove music. Then after some hassle they buy him a new ticket, and the problem is resolved.
Our first concert is in a salsa dancing club, a famous one called Mama Rumba. Before we start the late at night concert, we wonder if the dancing audience is really waiting for Turkish music with lots of adventurous improvisation. But I feel the confidence and enthusiasm of our deceded friend Behsat in myself, and I figure that if we just do our thing with real passion, they will dig it. And they do. The nice thing about Mexican audience is that they show their enthusiasm immediately, which is inspiring. I am happy that this concert, that is the first one after Behsat passed away in february, turns out so nice. And he is very much in our thoughts the whole time.
After our concert, there is a jamsession with musicians from the festival and a 10 piece local salsa band. It turns out really great, especially under the inspiring guidance of Cheick Tidiane Seck, who sings and plays his keyboard. Cheick is a kind of legend, having played with and produced albums of Saleif Keita, Joe Zawinul, Manu Dibangu, etc, and he is not only very nice as a person, but he really rocks as a musician! I join them, and we have great fun together. With these outstanding musicians even playing Dminor for half an hour is a party!

From left to right: Steven, Mehmet Uludag, Afra Mussawissade, Eric Calmes, Erman Dirikcan

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