Born: November, 1975 Primary Instrument: Kora
Performing on the 21-string Mandinka Harp and the Turkish Oud, Kane Mathis renders compelling interpretations of these traditional musics. Years of study with generous masters have given Kane a rare opportunity to share these traditions with other cultures.
Kane began taking trips to The Gambia, West Africa in 1997 and has continued rigorous study of the Mandinka Kora. Over the past ten years his performances have earned him recognition by the Gambian president, The Gambian minister of culture, and both national television and radio of The Gambia.
Kane’s primary kora teachers are Malamini Jobarteh of Brikama, The Gambia and Moriba Kouyate of The Gambia. The Jobarteh family remain one of The Gambia’s most important musical legacies. Tata Din din Jobarteh, Pa Bobo Jobarteh, and Siffai Jobarteh are the families current most visible exponents touring the world.
Kane’s oud study began with Mutlu Torun of the I.T.U. conservatory in Istanbul and continued with 5 and a half years of courses with Oud virtuoso Münir Nurttin Beken.
Kane is available for performances for any context as well as lessons and lectures.
Banning Eyre, Senior Editor: Afropop Worldwide afropop.org
Listening to Kane Mathis’ kora playing brings to mind Keith Jarrett’s Koln Concert. Their instruments are similar: in Mathis’ case, the kora is a 21-stringed West African harp that he learned in Gambia. Take the guts out of Jarrett’s piano, stand them up and pluck them, and you have the same idea. Both performers employ gorgeous improvisation on top of simple rhythms; their songs meander between chord and melody, creating a continuous, crystalline drone.
Seattle Weekly: Erik Neumann
The Kora Band, Cascades (Origin, 2010)
The Kora Band, June 2009 Studio Session (Origin, 2009)
The Kora Band, Live At Jimmy Maks 10-9-09 (Self Released, 2009)
The Kora Band, Just 4 U (Origin, 2009)
The Sahel Band, The Sahel Band (Self Released, 2008)
Kane Mathis, 2005 (Self Released, 2005)
Kane Mathis, Kora And Percussion (Self Produced, 2004)
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