Bassist and singer Richard Bona and Nik West at Musicology Barcaffé Sessions
Two highly anticipated performers are expected to perform in Belgrade this March, at the famous concert series Musicology Barcaffé Sessions, which this year became a regional event. The two of them are brought together by an unusual combination of talents, virtuoso playing of bass guitar and powerful voices, and the absolute enjoyment in the concerts of these two musicians will be complemented by the finest Barcaffé espresso coffee.
Richard Bona and his five-member band, will hold two concerts at the cult Bitef art café club, on March 10 and 12 and thus open the spring edition of the Musicology Barcaffé Sessions concert series. Just two weeks later, on March 26th, on the same scene, the great Nik West will perform.
Richard Bona was born in a small village in Cameroon, in a musical family, so music was a natural choice for him. As a four-year-old, he began playing the balafon and since he was not wealthy, he made his own instruments. He made his first guitar from the old motorcycle reservoir and nylon used for fishing. He said he turned to jazz for financial reasons, after the owner of a restaurant where his band played traditional music told them to play solely jazz and thus introduced him to a new world. Jazz completely changed Bono’s life, although he would later run away from any sort of genre identification.
At the age of 22, Bona immigrated to Germany to study music, and later he studied in France. When he moved to New York in the 1990s, Bona set the jazz scene on fire and impressed colleagues and audience with his extraordinary skill and talent. The fans call him “African Sting”, critics laud him as great professional, but it’s his way of connecting to the audience what really define him as a true musician. His vocal which defies every effort, a frenzied skill with the bass guitar, unique power of writing songs and the ability to play almost any instrument, positioned him as one of the few African artists who gained an unreachable reputation on a world level.
He was awarded numerous important awards and recognitions, including a Grammy and Victoires du Jazz Award for the best international artist in 2004, and he played and recorded with giants such as Mike Stern, George Benson, Pete Metini, Chaka Khan, Steve Gadd, John Legend and many others.
The explosive stage presence is not enough to describe the way Nik West moves, amazes and shocks the mass wherever she performs. She is a real sorceress on the stage where she sings, dances and slaps her bass guitar, and she is also known for her “Cherokee do” that is, symbolically, in the shape of a bass key. With a biography that includes working with Quincy Jones Productions, Prince, Glee, John Meyer, Macy Gray, Dave Stewart from the band Eurythmics and many others, Nick Vest is much more than just another beautiful face. Her colleagues, critics, and audience consider her one of the most prominent representatives of the new funk scene and the successor to the legendary Prince, whose protégé she was and tabloids once wrote about their alleged affair.
A well-known music journalist Alec Henderson described her talent in Billboard magazine:
“Nik West is one of the rare artists of the 21st century whom music ideas and virtuosity do not lack. She is a young bass player, who knows her instrument perfectly, and plays as if inspired by Markus Miller. “.
Her talent caught the eye of Steven Tyler and Lenny Kravitz, whom Nik Vest became one of the favorite young musicians.
“I felt the energy of this girl the first time I was in the same room with her – I knew she was something special,” said Tyler.
Nik West’s photos were on the cover of Bass Musician Magazine, Bass Player, Bass Quarterly (Germany) and Bass Magazine (Japan). She was one of the first musicians who played on the first six-string Fender bass and she is the cover face of their new bass guitar Dimension Bass (in whose development she participated), as well as the bass amplifier Black Beauty by SWR company. A promo photo for this product was selected personally by Marcus Miller.
In addition, Nik West has designed the “Queens of strings” campaign which promotes music education of talented girls.
The new dimension of enjoyment in these intimate performances will bring the aroma of fresh and the long-lasting taste of Barcaffé espresso. Now all you have to do is enjoy the virtuosic notes of Richard Bonn and Nik West.
We are waiting for you at Musicology Barcaffé Sessions!