With 400 musicians, artists and dancers with their own unique flair and flavour at WOMADelaide, it’s impossible not to find at least one act that makes you say “wow.”
Already we’ve been blessed with two glorious days of world class music, and as we reach the half way mark we decided to wrap up our own experiences in Botanic Park so far.
Friday evening saw the return of one of the more well-known acts at the festival, Melbourne’s The Cat Empire. Their fusion of funk, Latin, jazz, reggae, gypsy, Cuban, hip-hop and spicy chemistry with crowd lit the flame for a weekend of nonstop dance and culture.
Yet WOMAD isn’t just about shaking your rump, yesterday we took the opportunity to hone our yoga skills, before a bounce on ‘Sacrilege’, an inflatable life-sized replica of the Stonehenge that will turn any ‘adult’ into a big kid.
By mid-day sandals we’re kicked off and it was lunch time; at WOMAD you’re spoilt for food choice with Turkish, Greek, Italian, Thai, Afghan and more on the menu. The smells take you to the country of their origin; I went for a more familiar option of two lamb skewers, with well-seasoned flat bread and fresh salad drizzled in olive oil to cleanse the pallet.
After a satisfied stomach, The Spooky Men’s Chorale caught my attention; a bunch of blokes from NSW who’ve established their own style of men’s chorale singing to Georgian church songs and romantic ballads.
Other highlights included Adelaide’s own Wasted Wanderers, who convinced the sitting crowd to stand up on their bare feet and jive to their soulful-folk blues. Frontman Dusty Lee knows how to work a crowd, you can read our interview with him here.
But the climax of the day was Sydney-based nine-piece The Strides, who can’t be confined to one genre; a musical recipe of reggae, modern dance hall, Afro-jazz, hip-hop and whatever their nine members throw in the mix. The band members all come from different walks of life and promote one love, with a clear connection with the land and tackling issues like domestic violence through their music. We interviewed the band before WOMAD, you can check it out here.
As the moon replaced the sun, everyone gathered at the Foundation Stage for legendary American hip-hop group De La Soul. The boys who formed in the late 80s proved they are still lit as ever, throwing down classic rhymes with tinges of jazz and getting the crowd down, dirty and their hands in the air with no shortage of onstage banter.
If you haven’t experienced WOMAD yet, there is no better time than right now. With the long weekend in your favour there’s no excuse, and with performances from Marlon Williams & the Yarra Benders, Sarah Blasko and Alpine still to come, you’d be off ya tree to not be soaking up the chilled atmosphere in Botanic Park. Leave your shoes at home.