Zap Mama

I am known as Zap Mama... This is my story. Described with imagery, the way I feel it.
I planted a seed... I didn't know that the seed was to grow. I made my first composition while I was still a student of Arts History and Visual Arts. This composition was a mix of polyrhythmic and polyphonic voices. From this the ZAP style was born. As a teenager, music is often all you have to help you in the transition between childhood and adult life. I didn't identify and recognize myself in any genre, so I created my own. Before I knew I'd be part of the music scene, there where numerous artists who inspired my paintings and fed my soul, they were my breeding ground.

In 1991-1992, with my first album ADVENTURES IN AFROPEA, my seed awakens, pushing roots into the darkness of the earth, connecting with ancestors. I traveled to Congo, where I was born. There, in the deep forest, from my uncle and aunt, from my matriarchal family, I received mother’s earth sounds and songs. I listened to the harmonies of the forest, staying in the roots of the giant trees, smelling pure oxygen and the extract of life.
I connected with gestures through the sound and power of voices. I found the common language of laughter, love, sadness, suffering and joy. That was It!!! I was in, receiving the light, the main inspiration. ZAP MAMA discovered the world, discovered the essence, the goal, the Thing.
Sound became my obsession! I listened to more ethnic music from India, Mali, Africa, New Zealand, Haiti, Bali, Japan, Brazil, Spanish Flamenco, Argentinean Tango, and the spiritual music of Inuit and Sufis. I visited some of these tribes. I wanted to smell, to feel, to sweat, really be in that three dimensional sound. They were my teachers.
Traveling back and forth to Europe, where I grew up, I was still a student. I had many things to learn. And I began to blend these cultural influences into my art, zapping from one beat to another. My goal was clear. This zapping is the source of the name ZAP MAMA. First big success arrives. The album stays in The Billboard top for 21 weeks and is announced as the top seller in The World Album category.
In 1994 with the second album SABSYLMA, the seed sprouts and grows to find the light above. With this five women band, I traveled through the USA, to SINGAPORE, AUSTRALIA, JAPAN and EUROPE... This tour brought us recognition, awards and nominations from the western world.
As every plant, the growth of my career needed some caring hands to help, guide and support. One of these caring persons is MIRIAM MAKEBA, who invited the group to open her shows as a support act band and with who I had the chance to collaborate for several projects. ZAP MAMA appeared on TV and first famous and widely known shows all over the world, BBC, ABC, “The Arsenio Hall Show” and “Sesame Street” in USA, TF1 and TV5 in France. ZAP MAMA is demanded even on Japanese TV. The news journal announces that album is nominated for The Grammy Awards as the Best World Music album. On The Billboard top, it stays for 14 weeks, reaching the third place inThe World Album category. But I didn’t stop, my goal was apart of this, more than nominations and awards. I wished to plunge deeper in humanness. I changed the concept.
From here I spiraled up, year after year, zapping from one style to another, always right on the edge, looking ahead, feeling the vibes and the essence of the human connection through the music. I was singing songs in Arabic, Spanish, French, Swahili, Malay, English and the untranslatable, universal vocal sounds called ONOMATOPOEIA.
This is the fun part.
In 1996 SEVEN 7 My growth is nurtured through inspiration... I traveled to Timbuktu, the West African desert in Mali to visit the Tuareg, Peul and Bambara tribes. The main thing there was the essence of the blues. I was strengthening my branches and growing up. I took the lead vocal of ZAP MAMA, no more a cappella. Dizzy MANDJEKU, the famous solo artist of “ODEMBA OK JAZZ ALL STARS” band, joined ZAP MAMA. I signed with a MAJOR label and recorded first time with a rapper, MICHAEL FRANTI (MICHAEL FRANTI AND SPEARHEAD), the legendary artist U-ROY, MANU DIBANGO (King of Makossa), DJ KRUSH and others. I performed with Papa WEMBA.
In 1999 with AMaZone, my tree starts blooming, new flowers, new colors, new scents and new sound. What a splendor! I move to New York City and share my sounds with the urban, hip-hop and jazz scenes. I perform with great artists like AL JARREAU at Carnegie Hall, BOBBY MC FERRIN and PHOEBE SNOW.
The same year, ZAP MAMA signs to record in Hollywood a soundtrack for the movie “MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 2”. This soundtrack is "Iko-Iko", a cover of "Jock-A-Mo" by Sugar Boy & the Cane Cutters. I felt I was ready to give. I knew that there was something that needed to be shared. From this came the idea for my next album.
2004 ANCESTRY in PROGRESS The leaves reach out...The ancestry was in progress. Recording the album with THE ROOTS in Philadelphia, I made the other part of my mission to create an exchange between the Afro-European spirit with the Afro-American spirit. Many guest stars appear on the record: ERYKAH BADU, TALIB KWELI, COMMON, BAHAMADIA, BILAL and QUESTLOVE. And again the album of ZAP MAMA on The Billboard top strikes the first place and stays on in the top 20 weeks long. The same year, a very sad event happened in my life, I lost my best friend. Her name was Nina. To be able to accomplish what I did, I needed a shoulder in my ups and downs, an open heart, somebody to listen to. She was my sun and moon, I was her moon and sun. In the dark moments, we lightened each other, made each other shine. Friendship like this is rare. When you have a friend, keep a warm place in your heart. With that love I had to go on.

Beyond the stars the SUPERMOON was born, to be unique, to be herself and shine through the creativity.
2005-2007 SuperMOON Roots grow deeper into the darkness of the earth. Guests stars for this album were LADYSMITH BLACK MAMBAZO, TONY ALLEN, ME’SHELL NDEGEOCELLO, SERGIO MENDES and SPEECH (ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT).
2009-2012 RE-CREATION Fresh growth emerges from center. I re-create myself. This re-creation was both, a self-renewal and the pleasure of relaxation and enjoyment. A cover of a famous French song “Paroles, paroles” with the guest star VINCENT CASSEL is recorded. G. LOVE and BILAL appear as guest stars on the album. The NAACP IMAGE AWARD nominates it as Outstanding World Music Album. I’m invited as a guest star for KERY’s JAMES album.
2013 FLASHBACK to the PRESENT is the eighth and the last album for ZAP MAMA. Perfect beginning of the infinity! I am standing proud, tall as a tree with fruits of sound to taste. Creating beauty, caressing feelings that stimulate your imagination. Come and reach out for my fruits, sing it loud! Join me and find your place on the crown of my tree! Everyone has a voice, a sound to be heard. None of us can know or do everything, each of us knows something. And if we pool our resources and combine our skills, we can put the pieces together. This is what the new ZAP MAMA concept is about, a collective musical intelligence.

Naima Shalhoub

Naima is a world soul-singer, musician, songstress and cultural advocate. Based in Oakland, CA, her songs flow through genres picking up flavors of American soul, jazz, rhythm &blues, Arabic soul, and roots music. With a love for improvisation and welcoming the spirit of the moment, her performances will take you on a journey between the present, past and future where time suspends through music, soul-stories, melody and the spaces between.

Growing up a first-generation Lebanese Arab woman in upstate New York fills life with a set of complexities and understandings that reverberates in the depth of Naima's voice. Filled with a longing for a better world and the presence of an old soul makes the sweet yet haunting melodies of this up and coming artist travel straight to your heart. Armed with an MA in postcoloinal anthropology, years of performance experience and a joy for bringing people together she's set on traveling the world through her music. “I don’t think music can directly change the state of things, but I know for a fact it can inspire people to keep it moving, to keep dreaming of what feels impossible, and can remind us that we’re not alone.”

DJ Leydis

DJ LEYDIS was born and raised in Cuba. She became involved in the Cuban hip hop movement during its inception and helped organize events, community shows, and a women’s hip hop collective called Omega. Leydis has created the first female DJ mixtape and has performed across Cuba as a spoken word artist. She also continues to be an articulate speaker on Cuban hip-hop culture and how the embargo and travel ban has prevented the exchange of music and culture between the U.S and Cuba. Having recently moved to the United States, she currently resides in the Bay Area and has toured with DJ for Omegas Kilay, Las Krudas, and Los Rakas. Leydis has also opened up for Erykah Badu and ?estlove. She was also resident Dj at the Lukas Lounge (The Jet Set) every 2sd and 4th Wednesday (Rumba to Hip Hop every 3rd Sunday at Soma Bar inside.

Deejay Julicio

DJ Julicio first came into contact with turntables while attending high school in Cupertino, California, where he learned the art of scratching and turntablism. When he moved back to Santiago, Chile in 1995, he began his career playing with Chilean Rock super group Los Morton. Promoters later caught wind of the young talent and booked him weekly at many reputable clubs throughout Santiago, and as an opening act for visiting bands including Snoop Dogg, Orishas, and Cypress Hill. After working with Los Morton, DJ Julicio started working with La Pozze Latina and with Jimmy Fernandez as well as many other local talents. He traveled all over Chile, Brazil, Argentina, Peru and Ecuador with Zaturno Espacial (Live Band Hip-Hop).

DJ Julicio moved to San Francisco, California in November 2010 and has performed at many Bay Area clubs including the Fox Theater Oakland, Mezzanine SF, The Independent, Brick and Mortar, Elbo Room, Rockit Room, The New Parish, Mighty Club, Eve Lounge and more. In the US, he has opened for internationally recognized bands including: Cafe Tacuba, Ana Tijoux, Calle 13, Cultural Profetica, J Boog, Bayonics, Immortal Technique, J-Boogie, Dead Prez, Los Rakas, GhostFaceKillah, Paroahe Monch, Camp Lo, Killah Priest, Funky C, Gondwana, and more.

In 2011, he performed at Art Basel Miami and in March 2012 he returned to Miami for WMC where was very well received. Upon landing back in San Francisco, DJ Julicio was invited to participate in the 2012 DMC finals.

So far DJ Julicio has started 2013 with a killer New Year’s Eve party in downtown San Francisco, a residency at The Clift Hotel SF, and a return to Seattle for an annual show. In February, he will go on tour starting in Miami, then Santiago, Chile, and wrapping up at SXSW. Currently residing in San Francisco, he continues to DJ and participate in new music projects with local San Francisco Bay Area artists, including Raw-G and Bang Data.

$22.00 - $25.00

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