Bokanté receive two Grammy nominations for latest album ‘History’

Bokanté’s third album History, which was released on Real World Records back in June, has received two nominations in the 2024 Grammy Awards. The album has been shortlisted for ‘Best Global Album’, and Nic Hard, who engineered and mixed the album, has been shortlisted for ‘Best Engineered Album (non-classical)’.

History is the second album by the nine-strong, globally-spread band who are led by Snark Puppy founder Michael League. Their previous album What Heat, a collaboration with Jules Buckley and Metropole Orkest, was nominated for the ‘Best World Album’.

Recorded at Michael League’s studio in Barcelona, the album finds the band plugging into the blues, tracing the genre’s roots in West Africa and the Arab world through the diaspora into the retro-modern present.

Bokanté - Adjoni (Official Video)

The Guardian described the new album as “insinuatingly political but imaginatively unshackled”, and Songlines awarded it five stars, saying “History’s balance of sonorities and textures is testament to the group all being on the same page: shifting from unbridled urgency and insatiable grooves to meditative introspection in an instant. This ensemble seemingly have it all. And killer songs to boot.”

As ever, the themes of songs on History are politically driven. “Used positively, in moments of vulnerability music can make us more receptive to messages,” says Michael League. “In that sense Bokanté tries to open the listener up to the unique perspectives shared among the group’s members. We are multi-lingual, multicultural and multi-generational but there’s a connection we feel as musicians and people. It’s a really beautiful thing.”

The Grammy Awards ceremony takes place on Sunday, February 4, at the Arena in Los Angeles. History by Bokanté is available on CD, LP and all digital platforms.

Featured release

  • History


    Released 23 June 2023

    On their third album, Bokanté have plugged into the blues, tracing the genre's roots in West Africa and the Arab world through the diaspora into the retro-modern present. These nine tracks tell — with lyrics sung mainly in Guadeloupean Creole — of outsiders and seers, memories and joy; of black history, global unity and the futility of war. Of taking time to rest, feel, love. Of the redemptive power of music — as a conduit, a change maker, a muse.

By Oran Mullan

Published on Tue, 14 November 23

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Les Amazones d’Afrique assert women’s freedom of expression with new single ‘Kuma Fo’

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Guitarist Salif Koné demonstrates three musical styles from Mali

Rokia Koné and Les Amazones d'Afrique's guitarist demonstrates Mandigue, Bamana & Tuareg music.

Sheila Chandra: The pursuit of radical vocal expression

Sheila's trilogy of albums for Real World is being re-issued on CD, and on vinyl for the first time.