Kaleta & Super Yamba Band / Moodlite

Grid City Fest
Friday, August 5, 2022
Summer nights at The Commonwealth Room with an extended patio, featuring: live music, speciality drinks, charity games, and amazing local vendors.
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"Brooklyn’s Kaleta & Super Yamba Band are fronted by Afrobeat and Juju veteran Leon Ligan-Majek a.k.a. Kaleta. The singer/guitarist from the West African country of Benin Republic lived his adolescent life in Lagos, Nigeria where Afrobeat was born. Kaleta's guitar chops earned him decades of touring and recording with Fela Kuti, King Sunny Ade, Lauryn Hill and more. Kaleta got his start in the late 70s performing in church and was soon after picked up by iconic Juju master and world music pioneer King Sunny Ade. A few years later Fela Kuti came calling. Kaleta would go on to tour the world playing guitar for the King of Afrobeat in his storied band Egypt 80 through the 1980s and into the 1990s. Now based in New York City, Kaleta has been leading Super Yamba Band since 2017. Their debut album ""Mèdaho,"" which was released by California indie label Ubiquity Records, draws on the group’s shared reverence for the raw, psychedelic sounds that captivated Kaleta as a music loving kid in 1970s Benin. Mèdaho means ""big brother,"" ""elder"" or ""teacher"" and is dedicated to Kaleta's late brother Ligan-Ozavino Pascal who introduced him to funk and soul music at a very early age. The album was included on Bandcamp’s “Best Albums of Summer 2019” list and two of the songs were chosen for the ABC/Hulu series High Fidelity staring Zoe Kravitz. Kaleta and his band have also erupted onto the stages and video screens of major music festivals and music publications across the US. They performed at the historic Apollo Theatre in 2019. They even prompted Action Bronson to stop his own show on VICELAND TV just so he could hear more Yamba. They also performed on Adult Swim’s Fishcenter Live show in 2019. In 2017 they rocked Paste Magazine’s Emerging Music Festival in NYC and after that performance Afropop Worldwide fell in love with Kaleta, saying “his James Brown grunts have got to be some of the best in the business!”

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Best described as an “electro-soul trio”, Moodlite’s sound is ever-changing and evolving. Deep basslines and thumping kick drums give way to hypnotic lyrics, silky sax, and driving guitar. After connecting with and opening for The Human Experience (David Block) , Moodlite went on to play The Grand Artique stage at Lightning in a Bottle 2019. Since then, they’ve opened for acts such as Dirtwire, Moontricks, Marvel Years, and Late Night Radio. Prior to Covid, Moodlite was booked for an April 2020 international tour opening up for Rob Garza of Thievery Corporation. 2022 looks to be a breakthrough year for Moodlite as they plan to release an album and expand their audience throughout the West.