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18 août 2008

The best one to date

WOMAD is famed for giving lesser known artists a platform to shine on but Sunday was Africa's night. During the final 24 hours of the festival music fans lapped up the glorious sunshine and absorbed a lesson in true world music.

Nigerian Seun Kuti closed Womad with a rousing performance worthy of his late father, Fela, who was the former lead singer of his band Egypt 80. Fela was a multi-instrumentalist musician and composer, and a pioneer of Afrobeat music, a human rights activist and political maverick. His son gave the festival a politically charged, rock inspired performance.

American country rock band Little Feat got the afternoon off to a rousing start on the open-air stage with a huge crowd strumming their air guitars to their lively set. French reggae group Babylon Circus and the African influenced Trans Global Underground gave audiences something to dance away the evening to.

But for many the highlight was British band Squeeze, who got the crowds up on their feet with a number of their hits including Up the Junction and Cool for Cats. The festival presented an eclectic mix of entertainment and the last word should go to organiser Peter Gabriel who called it musically one of the best festivals WOMAD ever had'.

By Lois Avery, Gazette & Herald, Thursday 31st July 2008

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