El Gato Negro

Marseille France

El Gato Negro, a versatile singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, has spent the past 15 years embarking on a musical journey that has taken him across the globe, immersing him in a tapestry of diverse musical traditions.

Watching his contemporaries from the rooftops he roams, observing the world from the branches of a tree in the Amazon rainforest, the notion of borders, both geographical and musical, is non-existent for El Gato Negro, who has been exploring the world since he was eighteen.
Driven by a keen sense of adventure and encounters, his instincts led him to Dakar. It's from there that arose the first murmurs of "Tigre qui pleure" (Tiger Crying), his 4th album, this time conducted by GUTS, to be released on January 26.

Renowned for his jubilant and festive melodies, El Gato Negro's new album, 'Tigre qui pleure,' reveals a more contemplative side of his artistry. While the danceable rhythms and optimism still resonate, they now narrate the tales of a tumultuous world, one that evokes the tears of his "inner tiger" – hence the album's title, 'Crying Tiger.'

Before becoming a tiger, the cat got its claws on "Cumbia Libre" in 2015, a debut album that paid tribute to Latin music, after a decade spent on the continent.
A few years later, like a scream, he released "Ouvre la Porte" in partnership with Amnesty International, and more recently the feline threw himself into the pool of electronic music with a remix record released on Montreal's Cosmovision Records.

In every country where he settles for a few months or years, the black feline is always embraced by the communities he encounters. Senegal was no exception, and neither were musicians from West Africa and Cuba.

Enchanted by the sound of his Afro-Colombian flutes, which he handles with elegance, members of Orchestra Baobab, including piano icon Cucurucho Valdés from Havana, were delighted by El Gato Negro and his bag of songs, which travel with him. Philosophical tales, poetic observations, light-hearted love stories are told in French, Spanish or Wolof.

Lonely but never alone, El Gato Negro is always surrounded. Among his own, he becomes Axel again, and this new adventure is written as a collective. With the jazz keyboard of Florian Pellissier, the metronomy of drummer Cyril Atef, the beatmaking science of Izem and the voices of Pat Kalla, Djeuhdjoah and Lieutenant Nicholson.
Balafon, n'goni, tama, samplers and synths intertwine to establish this fusion between traditional and digital, between organic percussion and bass-heavy beats, between the wisdom of the griots and a hip hop on which blow melodies carried by the winds of Cape Verde.

Known as a festive and funny man, Axel presents here a new reflection. From now on, he'll be passing on his messages in a gentle, multi-layered way. The sweetness of fruit picked from the tree sometimes gives way to that of bitter coffee.

El Gato Negro, nicknamed the lucky black cat, is first and foremost a performer. Nourished by 15 years on the streets of 30 of the world's hottest countries, it's on stage that he works his magic. El Gato's live shows are more like a trance or a journey than a concert, and it's with dance, joy and thrills that Axel takes us from Latin America to West Africa with his deep, spellbinding lyrics.

For this new tour, the one of "Le Tigre", Axel invites Salif Diarra, the Mandingo music wizard he met in Burkina Faso, master of the cora and balafons, Mary May, the Franco-Congolese rapper and multi-instrumentalist, and Mexican Afro-Latin percussionist Pablo Senties, with whom he has performed over 300 concerts to date.

Beneath El Gato Negro's perpetually cheerful mask, a hitherto hidden melancholy is now on full display with his new opus, "Tigre qui pleure", due for release on January 26, 2024.

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Tigre qui pleure - CD
El Gato Negro Tigre qui pleure - CD Release CD X-Ray Production
Sale price15,00 €
El Gato Negro Tigre qui pleure Release LP X-Ray Production
Sale price22,00 €