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TOUBABOU

Jazz Rock/Fusion • Canada


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Toubabou biography
Toubabou is a sort of continuation of the supergroup VEBB (Ville Emard Blues Band which was anything but a blues band, most member having played or will play in other Quebec major progressive groups). Despite Stanley and Farmer ending up in HARMONIUM and Lise Cousineau having played in many groups before, the real leader is percussioniste Michel Séguin (no relation with twins Richard and Marie Claire Séeguin also on the progressive front of music), the group even taking their name after the nickname of Séguin given to him by Africans friends: Toubabou Djebe Folla - white men playing drums. The groups starts from the meeting of students: artistes from Mali, Senegal and Togo as a cultural exchange.

The first album will be recorded live at the Superfrancofetes on the Abraham plains (where Quebec had lost its independence over the loyalists in the 18th century) in front of a crowd of 50 thousands +. The thread of the album is to present the two units one jazz rock (so typical of the superb instrumental jazz-rock invogue in Quebec around the time), the other playing traditional African chants. As the concert unfolds there is more and more interaction between the music, some tracks veering towards Cajun music. The following year, Toubabou will release a second album with two new members including a brass player, the album being quite different presenting a progressive funk-jazz but the percussive elements still very present.

Both Toubabou albums are highly recommended to those really wanting to discover a textbook case of fusion music.

: : : Hugues Chantraine, BELGIUM : : :

Toubabou official website

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TOUBABOU discography


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TOUBABOU top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.89 | 15 ratings
Attente
1975

TOUBABOU Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.66 | 10 ratings
Le Blé Et Le Mil
1974

TOUBABOU Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

TOUBABOU Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.92 | 5 ratings
Attente - Le Blé et le Mil
2004

TOUBABOU Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

TOUBABOU Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Attente by TOUBABOU album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.89 | 15 ratings

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Attente
Toubabou Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by greenback
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Toubabou confirms that the Quebec progressive scene has many hidden gems: this record belongs to this category. You have to be mentally prepared here to receive an overdose of infernal Afro-Latin rhythms: the TONS of percussions, combined with a funky bass and fast drums, contribute to make this record a very original and jaw-dropping exhibition of impossible rhythmic section performance. Lise Cousineau's delightful female lead vocals are among the craziest & most excentric ones i have ever heard: her heavy breath G-spot tornado performance on "J'Freak Assez" makes me want to hear more...WOW! That's very sexy. Many parts remind a complex Frank Zappa's music, featuring George Duke on Fender Rhodes, especially on the "Ambush" track, even containing an ultra pleasant winner ambience made of dynamic brass arrangements. The slowly but surely accelerating rhythm outrageously loaded on "J'freak Assez" is a real success. The track "Pylône" really has similitudes with the Italian progressive artist Il Baricentro. The tracks sound quite varied, but they mostly remain in the fusion territory. Maybe only the first and last tracks are a bit out of place.

Rating: 4.5 stars

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 Attente - Le Blé et le Mil by TOUBABOU album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2004
3.92 | 5 ratings

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Attente - Le Blé et le Mil
Toubabou Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

4 stars The Toubabou double Cd release from Progresson ( the recording end of ProgQuebec) is really one of those moments where you cherish such organizations and think that not everything is turning awry on this f-#-ed up planet. I discuss the albums separatelyn their respective page but please note that there are computer-visible-only video tracks on bth discs and although of relatively bad image and sound quality , this is extremely enjoyabe even though the choice of releasing this on such a support is rather odd! A DVD might have done this better.

Nevertheless , a superb release from ProgQuebec. Rush out for it , so they take it as encouragment tofurther on their huge task of releasing the many Quebecois progressive music yet not released on Cd.

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 Attente by TOUBABOU album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.89 | 15 ratings

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Attente
Toubabou Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

4 stars Attente is Toubabou's second album and no less interesting than their live debut. But this time Toubabou is alone but the African rythms and inspirations remains, but they show that they are well assimilated by avoiding to sound fakely authenticly African. It is a much more conventional fusion abum and maybe proggier (in terms of clichés) , but relatively more even - fewer flaws but also less brilliance.

Starting out with asuperb percussion track of African inspiration, the album vees into a uch more contemplative Chant Des Choses with Lise Cousineau between melancholic snging and scatting. Grandiose! Then, the "hit" J'Freak Assez (a play on words with Fricassée - scrambled eggs) and its infectious funky groove: very catchy hooks and impressive musicianship with Séguin on percussion driving the group to perfection. A different Ambush than the one on their debut , not as good IMHO but also completed with brass section and Santana percussion break is next. Pylone has (for once) rather irriatating vocals, but quickly deal way by a guitar solo , but it stays one of the weaker Toubabou track. The return of Doudou (leader of the African guest on the debut album) for one track does not do the mistake to sound African for the sake of the continuity of the album. The title track is very melancholic with Cousineau back on the right track . the album closing with anoher strange mix of MalianDesert blues with an Acadian melody that could originate from the Bayous, somewhere in the creole America

Again the Cd version is coming with three video tracks (B&W and of poor quality but so enjoyable anyway) but visible only on a computer. Odd choice! A must for adventurous progheads!!!! As indispensible as their debut although in a different genre.

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 Le Blé Et Le Mil by TOUBABOU album cover Live, 1974
3.66 | 10 ratings

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Le Blé Et Le Mil
Toubabou Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Sean Trane
Special Collaborator Prog Folk

4 stars Toubabou' first album is mixed affair between a typical Quebecois jazz-rock group fusing their music with a separate African group. If you check out the track titles it will be easily understood which tracks are from our Quebecois musos and played by them exclusively. The tracks with more exotic titles are interacions in between Toubabou and their African friends from Mali, Senegal and Togo. The title says it all as Le Blé (wheat) Et Le Mil (millet the african wheat equivalent), and all of this financed by official cultural funds. This was recorded at the Superfrancofetes in August 74. The project leader is percussionist Michel Seguin of so many different collabs during those years. The man has such talents that he could've fitted anytime in a Santana line-up.

Toubabou's tracks are your typical jazz-rock track being extendly deveopped byall those Quebec combos during the formidable era of cultural identity revolution ( between 73 and 79 to 81 at most) and Oasis is exactly a textbook case for this style. I do not think a proghead somewhat reticent to jazz sonorities can still be after listening to the sheer beauty of this 10 min track going through all sorts of ambiance and Lise Cousineau's wordless vocals. Toubabou is more electric than say Maneige, Solstice or L' Orchetre Sympathique, but not more so than Sloche , Contraction, Opus-5, Aquarelle and a few others. Ambush is definitely more funky and incorporates African percussion and the huge latino-african precussion break (rather tedious nowadays but back then..) and the obligartory reprise by a super funky bass. This so, four years before Chic.

The more ethnic tracks range from the almost totally ( but rather lenghty)African chants and percussions to a Mali deser blues and developping into a strange Acadian trad folk song in the following track, making the Carignan track sound a bit Cajun music from the Louisiana Bayous. Really worth the detour at leat once. Yama Nekh is a very funky african jazz-rock track with Cousineau singing in African idioms/dalects in duo with another singer. Very impressive indeed!!! The last track is a devil-induced rythms patterns (sometimes sounding like Santana in Soul Sacrifice) with a great searing guitar solo and frantic Fender Rhodes etc.

The Cd release is now coming with two video tracks (B&W and of poor quality but so enjoyable anyway) but visible only on a computer. Odd choice! Although much less even than h following album , I prefer this one because of glimpses of absolute brilliance an adventure Nevertheless this is really an album that gives a meaning to fusion. A must for adventurous progheads!!!!

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