The Polyversal Souls
The Polyversal Souls is the new Berlin-based band by Max Weissenfeldt. The city’s vital music scene gave him the chance to bring together excellent musicians with a common passion and interest for sounds from all around the world.
In 2014 the band traveled to Algeria for a nationwide broadcasted concert at the capitols famous Algerian Radio Auditorium and twice to Ghana to tour the country with Philophon artists Guy One and Alogthe Oho Jonas. That included even a live performance at a nationwide broadcasted TV-program in front of 4.000 frenetic listeners. Both tours through Ghana were sponsored by the governmental Bundeskulturstiftung who consider “The Polyversal Souls” a role model for global culture
Guy One is the representative voice of the Frafra people in northern Ghana. He sings while playing the kologo, an ancient two stringed banjo, mostly played at traditional occasions such as wedding, funerals and other significant moments of the village life.
As the winner of the “Ghana Music Award 2012” he is a super star among his people and his popularity is tightly connected to the content of his singing: by telling stories with educational and philosophical content, he answers questions about every day life and connects on a spiritual level with his people. But his intense spirituality gives his performances a breathtaking energy that goes beyond any language boundary.
We first met Guy One in 2013 in his own record store on the main market of Bolgatang and immediately made plans to record together. The first result was the 7“ Suro Yuama, on which his virtuoso vocals and kologo playing dreamily merge with the unique groove of the Polyversal Souls.
This perfect match can be heard again on Yelle Be Bobre, the first single from the Polyversal Souls’ debut album Invisible Joy. Here the Frafra poet teams up again with his German music brothers and fills the Trans-Saharan distance with his ruffled but still smooth voice and his kologo, which - you won’t believe it - has just two strings!
Alogte Oho and his Sounds of Joy
Alogte Oho Jonas is the No.1 gospel singer of the Frafra people in northern Ghana. His songs can be heard all over Bolgatanga’s main market through big speakers and create a soulful soundtrack for the town’s busy life: that’s how the Philophon family discovered his voice and initiated this collaboration with him.
Jonas started singing in the church choir when he was five years old and since then music has always been his driving force. He is very committed to livening up the Bolgatanga music scene by working for the newly founded Frafra music association FRAMA.
Only 27 years old, he has already 5 self released albums out. On the 45 rpm “Zota Yinne/ Starlet Road Filling Romance” he teamed up with the Sahel Souls the Carribean flavored branch of the Philophon house band, to create a strong gospel hymn with a lyrical and driving groove.
Roy X is the alter ego of Jimmy Taylor, the youngest son of Ghanian Hi-Life legend Ebo Taylor. He studied fine-arts at the University of Winneba, but every free second he spent in his studio, which Ebo helped to establish in the familys hometown of Saltpond.
With his father being a leading force in bringing Highlife, Afrobeat and Ghanaian music tradition to an international recognition, Roy X now follows this mission by representing todays Hip-Life generation.
In conclusion one can appreciate on Roy X’s first 7“ for Philophon (Oduyewu) the interaction between a cooking live played rhythm, which pays respect to his fathers work, and a stomping tight rapping spiced up with some fine melodic vocal lines.
Idris Ackamoor and the Pyramids
Y-Bayani And His Band of Enlightenment, Reason And Love