I was delighted to be asked to co-compere at Amani Live presents Coco Mbassi at Manchester’s Band on the Wall on 10 December, especially since the event heralded a new milestone for Amani Creatives, who had decided to invite a big name on the African music scene as part of their own main stage showcase event.

A huge amount of work had gone into presenting a number of local African artists at the Picturehouse at Band on the Wall over the last six months of 2016. This was an opportunity to invite everybody back for a higher profile gig and several musicians took advantage to show off their talents.

First up was the brilliant master djembe player, Sidiki Dembele from the Ivory Coast, together with South African virtuoso cello player, Abel Selaocoe, who were joined on stage with Amani Creatives co-founder and leader Tagné Tebu on percussion. The combination of sounds was mesmerising and the musicality of an incredibly high quality, despite the fact that Tagné was replacing the the bass player of Sidiki and Abel’s band Chesaba, who was not available for the gig. Abel originally trained in classical cello at Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music before incorporating his African music into his music. His talent has been recognised in his native South Africa, where he has won the Standard Bank Young Artist award.

Papa Sam Alafia is a talented artist from Sierra Leone, who never fails to draw an audience with the warmth of his voice as he showcases his country’s Palm Wine Music. Not unlike the acoustic draw of old time Calypso or Mento from Jamaica, the songs display simple melodies and audiences enjoy singing along to his compositions. This man’s talents have been recognised by many a mainstream artist and you will often find his name on the credits of their songs, including Seal’s Prayer for the Dying”. He finished his set to cheers from the audience.

Coco Mbassi herself was the headliner of this wonderful event and despite having been raised to a dancing frenzy during Papa Sam’s set, the audience was delighted to quieten down to appreciate the musical diva from the Cameroon. Her band consisted of her husband Serge Ngando Tal Janes on guitar

The final act of the night brought the Amani Creatives team together with founder vocalist, Emmanuela Yogolelo, including her tribute to Papa Wemba in her set. Her vocal elegance and her nods to the pygmy music of the Eastern Congo of her birth and she was joined on stage by my co-presenter, Mama Joyce, a gospel singer from Kinshasa, who is not only a writer and composer, but lead singer of the fabulous Manchester International Roots Orchestra. Not only does she have the voice of an angel, she wowed the crowd with her bootylicious African dance skills!

Credit should go to the Amani team for pulling off such a successful event and tribute paid to partner organisations Community Arts North West, offered administrative support and Band on the Wall’s educational arm Brighter Sound who have supported Amani Creative with venue facilities for their monthly Picturehouse events. The only slight hiccup occurred with the Band on the Wall sound team, when the microphones failed just before Coco Mbassi came on stage. Despite this, however, it was clear that the audience had the time of their lives, particularly when audience member, Congolese musician Blanchard de Plaisir spontaneously decided to lead them in a spontaneous dance routine!

By Geli Berg

Amani Creatives is pleased to announce that Unltd will be holding an information briefing about its funding for social entrepreneurs.
The session is aimed at individuals who have a good idea which will create social change and would like to find out about UnLtd funding.
We are holding on the same evening a short meeting too to evaluate what our monthly showcases have helped those who took part in them, in 2016, achieve and to hear what artists think about the programme.
The spaces are limited to 8 maximum. There will be therefore two sessions;
5 – 6.30pm and 6.60 – 8pm.
Green Fish Resource Centre, 46-50 Oldham Street, M4 1LE
So if you want to attend please book your place with Emmanuela on amaniplatnet@gmail.com or call 07868591070 or Serge on 07931253095
Thanks and best wishes,



coco-mbassi-imageBand on the Wall |

Sat 10 Dec

7.00pm  – 10.30pm.

Coco Mbassi is a singer originating from Cameroon. She describes her music as ‘a tree with deep African roots and branches that extend some towards classical music, some towards soul, gospel and jazz, and others towards Latin music and even pop music’. Her faith and love for the human soul exude from every note of her soulful voice.

Winner of the Radio France International Découvertes Contest in 1996, winner of the German World Music CD Critics Award in 2001 and nominated for the BBC World Music

 Awards 2002 for her first album, SEPIA, Coco Mbassi has toured worldwide with her band. Some highlights include the Eden Project Live 8 Concert 2005 organised by Peter Gabriel, WOMAD in Reading, UK; Caceres, Spain; Las Palmas, Canary Islands, Singapore, and Womadelaide, Louisiana International Festival, Jazz Sous Les Pommiers, France, Festival d’Eté in Montréal, Nuits d’Afrique in Québec and Festival des REMY in Yaoundé (Cameroon).

Coco is supported by up-and-coming African music collective, Amani combining the mighty talents of local Congolese, Cameroonian, Sierra Leonean and Zimbabwean musicians bringing you the best of Congolese Rumba, Makossa, Afrobeat, Coupe Decale, Soukous, Palm Wine Music and South African Zulu Dance. Guaranteed to get you on your feet!

This event is brought to you by Amani Creatives in partnership with Brighter Sound and Community Arts North West.

It marks the culmination of the latest Amani Live series; a monthly contemporary African music event at Band on the Wall, featuring music, storytelling, spoken word, dance and visual art from the African diaspora.

 £10 Adv / £12.50

Tickets available from www.bandonthewall.org or in person Band on the Wall 25 Swan Street, M4 5JZ Tel:0161 834 1786

Amani live Jam

Posted: November 8, 2016 in Showcases

Another good experience at band on the wall with some good musicians and singers such as Clive Hunte, Hugh Peters, Tagné Tebu, Alan Budd, Emmanuela Yogolelo, M.N.I.B, Craig Winterburn ect….

Amani Live – October

Posted: September 23, 2016 in Uncategorized

screen-shot-2016-09-23-at-18-54-37Another Amani Live is cooking, bringing you the best of local talent from the African diaspora. Come along on Sunday 2nd October, bring the kids and enjoy uplifting South African Zulu music  and Afro Jazz vibes! The perfect end to the summer holidays!

In partnership with Brighter Sound and CAN, Amani Creatives present:


Silo is a songwriter, Zulu dancer from Zimbabwe. His music is a fusion of Mbaquanga and Afro jazzy accompanied by a roaring poetry. It includes Zulu warrior dance.

Nikky Norton Shafau

Nikky Norton Shafau is a bit strange, She wants to become a Storybook…
Nikky is a storyteller, poet, street artist and gatherer of stories. She is passionate about learning, African oral storytelling tradition and showcasing often unheard voices currently focusing on woman, children and those of African/Caribbean heritage. Nikky now embarks on a journey of transformation like no other ; weaving her narratives within the digital space and the hidden worlds within your city. Look out for clues… http://www.becomingstorybook.com/

Sunday 2 Octoberber
Doors open 4pm
Event starts 4.30pm
Finishes 6.15pm

£5 / Under 12s FREE

Facebook: amaniplatnet
Youtube: Amani Creatives

Amani Live – September

Posted: August 21, 2016 in Uncategorized

Jo Ludiazo

Amani Live – Sunday Grooves Under the Boabab

Another Amani Live is cooking, bringing you the best of local talent from the African diaspora. Come along on Sunday 4 September, bring the kids and enjoy uplifting Congolese Rumba, Gospel and Afro Jazz vibes! The perfect end to the summer holidays!

In partnership with Brighter Sound and CAN, Amani Creatives present:

Jocelyne Ludiazo

Dynamic singer, songwriter performer and storyteller from DR Congo, Jocelyne’s music brings together Congolese Rumba, Mutwashi and Seben, R&B and Gospel.

A lead singer for the Manchester International Roots Orchestra, her powerful voice has wowed audiences from Manchester to Edinburgh and beyond.

Afrika Jazz

This Afro Jazz trio blend African melodies and grooves with striking jazz harmonies, featuring the considerable talents of Tshepe Tshepela, Serge Tebu and Papa Blanche; two of whom have appeared at the Manchester Jazz Festival.

Sunday 4 September
Doors open 4pm
Event starts 4.30pm
Finishes 6.15pm

£5 / Under 12s FREE

Facebook: amaniplatnet
Youtube: Amani Creatives

Amani Live – August

Posted: August 2, 2016 in Uncategorized

Amani Live - August 2016.jpgIn partnership with Brighter Sound and CAN, Amani Creatives present:

Herve Vika
Gifted singer-songwriter and performer, Herve Vika plays an irresistible mix of Congolese Rumba and Seben. Guaranteed to get you on your feet, be prepared to learn a few authentic Congolese dance moves!

Autorite Mussema
Multi-talented musician, singer and composer Autorite Mussena shares beautiful songs about the everyday joys and struggles of ordinary people. His music takes you on a musical journey from Zouk to Reggae to the vibrant rhythms of Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Akinyemi Oludele
Akinyemi is an artist and singer with a wonderful ability to capture live performance through his paintings and sketches. This Sunday he will be performing music whilst sketching so you may end up on a piece of art too!

Amani Live
Sunday Grooves Under the Boabab

Sunday 7 August

Doors open 4pm
Event starts 4.30pm

5 / Under 12s FREE

Amani Live July

Posted: June 16, 2016 in performances, Showcases

Screen Shot 2016-06-16 at 22.15.41The third in a series of eight monthly events with contemporary live African music, dance and spoken word brought to you by AMANI CREATIVES in partnership with Britghter Sound andCommunity Arts North west.
Hugh Peters is a guitarist, bass player and composer of music who has worked in education, community arts and as a gigging musician in the North West of England for over 30 years. Educated in Manchester, he worked as a teacher of mathematics in Zimbabwe 1985-87 where his European style guitar playing became mixed in with the music schoolchildren sang, danced and played traditional drums to. Later he met and was influenced by Thomas Mapfumo, hearing his reworkings of traditional Zimbabwean and 70s ‘chimurenga’ songs, as well as other Harare based musicians making hybrid music mixing together American jazz, South African and Congolese styles into danceable African pop music.

He continues to work as a musician and educator in Manchester, which has recently seen a blossoming of global music styles growing from the strong local live music scene mixing with creative currents from around the world.

Cameroonian food from £1
Poisson braise´ – Grilled Fish marinated in Cameroonian spices served with plantain or cassava .
Vegetarian DG – Dices of plantain, carrot and courgettes in a light stir sauce
Pineapple cake
Door open at 4pm
Entry £5 – Free Under 12’s