‘On Est Ensemble’ by Electric Circus & Sahel Roots
On est ensemble is a project born from the meeting of Electric Circus, an Italian based funk band, and Sahel Roots, a duo from the north of Mali.
The two bands are composed by young musicians who are exploring in their own way new sounds. Electric Circus are inspired by experimental funk-psych western music while Sahel Roots uses traditional Malian instruments and melodies in a modern way. The purpose of the project was to encounter these two realities in the name of brotherhood besides borders and distance.
The project began in 2021 but its roots sprouted earlier, in 2019. Electric Circus was then engaged in the making of the soundtrack for a documentary series (Contrecourant by Andrea de Georgio), shot in Senegal and Mali. This first direct approach to west African culture and Mali in particular marked the band deeply. Thanks to Michele Cattani, an Italian movie-maker based in Mali and engaged in the contemporary Malian music scene, the band reached out to Sahel Roots, who at the time were inflaming club stages in Bamako and Ségou.
With a strong desire to share and create, Sahel Roots enthusiastically agreed to participate in the collective project proposed by Electric Circus. It all took place remotely: Sahel Roots recorded in Bamako (Mali), while the Electric Circus in Turin (Italy). Each of the two bands proposed two compositions that the other one completed. The musicians worked hard to get the right balance for the tracks, but in the end, differences were not a problem. While speaking different languages, through music they felt at ease and they comfortably understood each other.