About Original Roots

Ninety One Living Room Presents Original Roots: A new series of live music events on Friday nights with a world-jazz fusion angle.

On Friday 10th May it is with great pleasure that we welcome Waaju with support from Li Alba to the living room stage.

About the artist

Waaju are a London-based groove-centred world jazz ensemble that encapsulates influences from West African music, but with a specific focus on the music of Mali.

The band plays the original music of drummer/percussionist Ben Brown which combines the exceptional spirit of the likes of Ali Farka Toure, Oumou Sangare, Tinariwen & Baba Sissoko with the spontaneity of jazz harmony & improvisation.

The quintet brings the uniquely nuanced grooves of Waasoulou, ‘Desert Blues’ & other music styles into a jazz context – resulting in an undeniably energetic performance!

Waaju is:

Ben Brown – Drums/Percussion/Compositions
Sam Rapley – Tenor Saxophone
Tal Jane – Guitar
Joe Downard – Bass
Ernesto Marichales – Percussion

Supporting Waaju is Li Alba, a Latin soul singer born in London. Since beginning her career in opera, she has studied sacred music in Iran as well as polyphonic choral singing in Poland. Back on the UK jazz scene she works with the likes of Sambroso, Kansas Smitty’s and producer CHiF. Her range of cultures and tones is informed and eclectic.

Solo shows have seen her headline venues including Boisdale, Royal Academy of Art, Southbank Centre, Spitafields Night Market, 91 Livingroom, Dalston Curve Garden and more. Working across music and theatre she has performed with Station House Opera, The Lost Estate, Gardzienice, the European Network of Opera Academies and more. She has supported directors in the emerging arena of physical, musical devised theatre including Katie Mitchell, Martin Constantine and Mark Ravenhill. She has collaborated with composers across genres from Tom Coult from contemporary classical, Emilio Merone in jazz, Sara Rinaldi in pop/soul, Telmo Sousa in Afro-beat and CHiF in electronic sound art.

Discover Waaju

Event Details

  • Live Performance 8 pm
  • DJ from 11 pm to  1:30 am


How to reach us 

Nearest Station:
Shoreditch High Street overground

Tube: Aldgate East & Liverpool Street

Bus: 67, 8, 242, 205, 35, 149, 26.

If you have any questions please contact us here