Favorite

Diamonds from Sierra Leone 

click to enlarge Pardon me, Cursive, but do you have any Grey Poupon?
  • Pardon me, Cursive, but do you have any Grey Poupon?

In 2002, American filmmakers Banker White and Zach Niles traveled to Sierra Leone to make a documentary about the civil war tearing apart the West African nation.

While visiting the refugee camps of those affected by the war, White and Niles found a group of musicians that had joined together to make music as a salvation for those around them. These musicians, whose love for music overcame their age differences, became known as Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars, and the subjects of White and Niles' film of the same name.

The film, which, through these musicians' experiences, tells the story of the civil war, has been a massive hit on the documentary film festival circuit. And the All Stars' music has earned its own accolades. Since White and Niles' discovery and documentation of their story, the All Stars members have become international music sensations, playing dates in the United States, Canada and Japan.

"We found music as something to do in the camps, something to do for a living," says the band's founder, Reuben Koroma. "We never thought that we would come to America. It's really unimaginable. We just played the music to survive. All these things are happening like a miracle."

Koroma's appreciative tone is one reflected in the joyful sounds of the All Stars' West African reggae. It's a surprising and uplifting sound, especially considering the somber circumstances under which Koroma wrote each song.

"We know we've lost many things," Koroma says, "but we found something in music that revives us."

capsule

Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars

Boulder Theater, 2032 14th St., Boulder

Tuesday, Nov. 7, 8 p.m.

Tickets: $21.50, all ages; visit bouldertheater.com.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Latest in AudioFile

Readers also liked…

  • Inside Brian Wilson

    Musician Darian Sahanaja on playing with the revered Beach Boy and consulting on Love & Mercy
    • Jun 3, 2015
  • Shine on brightly

    Local musicians remember Natasha ‘ItsreaLight’ Spence
    • Jun 17, 2015

Popular Events

  • The Family Elephant @ Benny's Restaurant & Lounge

    • Fri., Oct. 7, 8 p.m.
  • Mike and the Headliners @ Jack Quinn Irish Alehouse & Pub

    • Wed., Sept. 28, 8 p.m.
  • Suga' Bear & the Show Time Band @ Crystola Roadhouse

  • Tribe @ Benny's Restaurant & Lounge

    • Fri., Sept. 30, 8 p.m.
  • The Further @ Back East Bar & Grill

    • Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 8:30 p.m.

More by Pete Freedman

  • Boys don't cry

    An editor stifles the sniffles as he writes his goodbye
    • Jan 24, 2008
  • 'Special' effects

    New Monsoon's a jam band only by association ... and vocab
    • Jan 17, 2008
  • Round and round

    EndeverafteR
    • Jan 10, 2008
  • More »

Most Commented On

Top Viewed Stories

All content © Copyright 2016, The Colorado Springs Independent   |   Website powered by Foundation