Juan Benavides Group blends traditional and new Flamenco and Middle Eastern styles with a modern soul/rock edge. Founder, Juan Benavides, hails from Bogota, Colombia. He studied flamenco guitar in Spain and toured extensively throughout the US. His music has been featured on several Putumayo collections. Featured vocalist Whitney Moore, spent four years studying and performing in Mexico and Spain and brings a touch of soul to her interpretation of Latin styles. Native Colombian, Juan David de Narvaez, comes from a long line of musicians, and after immigrating to the US focused his efforts on the cajon. Ryan Oslance plays drum kit primarily with avant-garde progressive rock band, The Ahleuchatistas, although he honed his hidden talent for latin grooves while traveling in Spain. Saxaphonist Ben Colvin comes from a jazz backrgound and plays a variety of world music styles with Coconut Cake. They’re joined by special guest bass virtuoso, Jake Wolf of The Billy Sea who not only provides solid bottom end, but also adds melodic voicings. The result of their collaboration is a fascinating musical exploration that begins in Andalusia and encompasses the rhythmic and melodic variety of a surprising array of influences from all corners of the globe.
Les Amis is an Asheville, NC-based band made up of some people who live in Asheville. Most of them weren’t born here. When these people play music together they generally play their interpretation of West African music. They play music together and they are friends. Sometimes other people play music with them. They call these people “the friends” as well. One might remember that from a French class or some international film you saw that the words “les amis” are French for “the friends.” All of these people get together to play live dance music for other people to dance to, or dance with. The Les Amis people also play music with other people. Two of them play music with a band called Toubab Krewe. Two of them play music with a band called Zansa. One of them plays with the a band called the AED (Asheville Ecstatic Dance) Ensemble. Together they are Les Amis. The end.
Dancer, Ania Bartelmus, “La Candela”, is a professional flamenco dancer based in Atlanta, GA and Seville, Spain. For over ten years, she has performed across the US, as well as Switzerland, Poland and Spain. Past venues where she performed include Spanish tablaos, as well as, US venues including the Reuther Auditorium in Kenosha, WI, Kimbell Art Museum in Ft. Worth, High Museum of Art Atlanta, the Emory University Theater, Shakespeare Tavern and the Telefair Museum Savannah. Ania also appeared in the CBS’s “Better Mornings Atlanta” and PBS station’s program “This is Atlanta”, as well as was a featured dancer in the music video “Kiss the Night”. Ania is currently touring North America with the Grammy nominated flamenco guitarist David Maldonado and his flamenco symphony production “Noche de Pasion”.