Fiche Personne
Saxophoniste Compositeur

Momo Wandel Soumah

Guinée

Français

Véritable roi du swing et de l’improvisation, Momo Wandel Soumah (1926-2003) était le doyen du jazz africain.
« Le jazz est né chez vous, mais, moi je l’ai ramené chez moi, en Afrique, car c’est de là qu’a jailli sa source. » Il créait sa musique sans l’écrire, en s’inspirant des chansons populaires, et en réunissant autour de sa voix « façon Louis Armstrong qui serait sorti de sa savane » et de son vieux saxo desséché, les grands maîtres des instruments traditionnels africains : kora, balafon, flûte pastorale, djembé,…

English

A true king of swing and improvisation, Momo Wandel Soumah (1926-2003) was the doyen of African jazz. He created his music without composing it, by drawing inspiration from popular songs, and by bringing together around his voice – sounding like a kind of « Louis Armstrong who’s come out of his savannah » – and his old, beaten up sax, the great masters of traditional African instruments: kora, balafon, pastoral flute, djembé, etc.
Momo’s music resembled a magical cocktail capable of transporting you without a warning from traditional music to the avant garde.
Born in Guinea in the late twenties, Momo Le Doyen was a privileged witness of contemporary African history: he experienced the colonial era with his orchestras only allowed to perform for whites-only balls and the independence of 1958, after which he spent twenty-six years in the national orchestras of President Sékou Touré’s Guinean revolution.
A few years ago, his sensational entry into the new Circus Baobab troupe (the first African aerial circus) as composer and head musician enabled him to be discovered beyond the borders of his own country.