Richard Bona


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About

“Imagine an artist with Jaco Pastorious’s virtuosity, George Benson’s vocal fluidity, Joao Gilberto’s sense of song and harmony, all mixed up with African culture. Ladies and gentlemen…..Richard Bona!”
     Los Angeles Times

"Richard Bona is running his smile, his tranquility, and his musical elegance all over the world.”
     ...

+ Show More

Contact

Publicist
Jeff Greene
812-339-1195

Current News

  • 11/28/201612/16/2016
  • New York, NY

Richard Bona & Mandekan Cubano

Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an international reputation that transcends cultural boundaries. His new album is a compilation of art inspired by the shared heritage, rich folkloric and traditional music of West Africa and Cuba. Sit back and experience art with a purpose; Richard Bona...

Press

  • DownBeat, Album review, 01/01/2017, Richard Bona with Mandekan Cubano
  • Jazz Times, Pick, 12/01/2016, Artist's Choice: Celebrating Africa by Somi
  • Bass Player Magazine, Interview, 10/31/2016, Richard Bona: from Cameroon to Cuba
  • Jazziz, Feature story, 10/01/2016, Bonafide: Richard Bona Finds Common Ground Between Cuba and His Native Cameroon
  • + Show More

News

12/16/2016, New York, NY, Club Bonafide, 7:30pm
11/28/201612/16/2016, Richard Bona & Mandekan Cubano
Event
12/16/2016
Event
12/16/2016
Ticket URL
http://clubbonafide.com/event/3601/
Ticket Phone
(646) 918-6189
Ticket Price(s)
$30-$40
Venue Zip
10022
Venue City, State
New York, NY
Venue St. Address
212 East 52nd Street
Venue
Club Bonafide
Concert Start Time
7:30pm
Doors Open
7:00pm
Richard Bona and the Mandekan Cubano have carefully crafted a fusion of sounds, which merge cultures together through their ability to speak the universal language of music. MORE» More»

Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an international reputation that transcends cultural boundaries. His new album is a compilation of art inspired by the shared heritage, rich folkloric and traditional music of West Africa and Cuba. Sit back and experience art with a purpose; Richard Bona and the Mandekan Cubano have carefully crafted a fusion of sounds, which merge cultures together through their ability to speak the universal language of music.

More than just a statement put to a tune, music is an outpouring of one’s soul in a deeply personal manner and that is exactly what “Heritage” serves to do. It is a window into the years of oral stories that have been passed down and placed in the musical prowess of Bona and the Mandekan Cubano. While this is Bona’s first official Afro-Cuban record, it is not his first endeavor in the African music scene—rather, it is the culmination of his decades of experience in various genres, which produces an authentic expression of culture through sound. Preserving the traditions of the western African slave “Cabildos,” Bona and the Mandekan Cubano bring the music, dance, rituals, and oral history of the island to the comfort of your home. Seeking inspiration from his origins, the themes of Bona’s art address international issues, which mirror his desire of utilizing music to take a stance on issues affecting the oppressed or the forgotten cultures of the people who so courageously paved the way for the life we presently live. The polyrhythmic beat felt in many of the tracks paradoxically serves as the bridge between African and Cuban music.

In present day society, we often get trapped into rigid lifestyles that reflect only one type of musical influence or culture. However, our world is vast, diverse, and is supported by the beautiful interweaving of multiple backgrounds. Without such diversity, our world would cease to be, quite frankly, a “world.” Its very definition reveals that it is “the earth, together with all of its countries, people, and natural features.” As a result, this album serves to educate listeners of the beauty that is created from remaining true to ones roots, yet also stepping outside of oneself to learn from others. Separately we succeed, but together, we thrive.

Event
12/16/2016

09/20/2016, Seattle, WA, Jazz Alley, 7:30 PM
08/04/201609/20/2016, “The African Sting”, Richard Bona, His Latest album, Heritage, and September USA Tour
Event
09/20/2016
Event
09/20/2016
Concert Start Time
7:30 PM
Venue
Jazz Alley
Venue St. Address
2033 6th Ave
Venue City, State
Seattle, WA
Venue Zip
98121
Ticket Price(s)
$30.50
Ticket Phone
(206) 441-9729
Ticket URL
http://www.jazzalley.com/www-home/artist.jsp?shownum=1709
Event Notes
Performing 9/20/16 and 9/21/16
Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s effortless voice and skills position him as a rare African artist to have established a reputation on an international platform. MORE» More»

“Imagine an artist with Jaco Pastorious’s virtuosity, George Benson’s vocal fluidity, Joao Gilberto’s sense of song and harmony, all mixed up with African culture. Ladies and gentlemen…..Richard Bona!”
     Los Angeles Times

“Richard Bona is running his smile, his tranquility, and his musical elegance all over the world.”
     L'EXPRESS

Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an unscalable reputation on an international platform.

Bona’s latest album Heritage, his eighth, is the first one with the Afro-Cuban band “Mandekan Cubano.” This album traces the roots of Cuban music back to their origins in the Mandekan empire of the 15th century and earlier, before the slave trade and colonization split Sundiata’s unified kingdom into so many parts. The music explores the alchemy of African rhythms in Cuba. This may seem ambitious, but sounds as natural and effortless as anything Richard Bona does; together with the Mandekan Cubano, he has carefully crafted a fusion of sounds that merge cultures together through their ability to speak the universal language of music.

Originally from Cameroon, Bona remains true to his roots, with African rhythms reflected in each of his seven albums; the first three, Scenes from My Life, Reverence and Munia display his unique approach to storytelling through sounds. Seeking inspiration from his origins, the themes of Bona’s albums address international issues which mirror his desire of using music to take a stance on issues affecting the oppressed. As an artist with a purpose, he expanded into new musical territories and teamed up with Congolese star, Lokua Kanza and Antillais singer/composer Gerald Toto to create the 2004 collective, Toto, Bona, Lokua on which Bona wrote four tracks.

The trio then hit the road and toured across France; however, Bono remained in Europe to tour with guitarist Mike Stern and guest star on Japanese guitarist Kazumi Watanabe's album "Mo Bop 2." Shortly after, the pair embarked upon a tour of Japan, providing Bona with the opportunity to incorporate the culture and sounds of a new territory into his work. Furthermore, he toured with Pat Metheny and appeared as a guest on two of Bobby McFerrin’s albums, along with numerous notable collaborations.

He later garnered recognition at the Victoires du Jazz Awards where he won the trophy for "Best International Artist of 2004;" such a prestigious award confirmed his ability to appeal to a multitude of audiences ranging from jazz, pop, bossa nova, traditional, afro-beat and funk. In 2005, Bona guest appeared on Mario Canonge’s album “Rhyzome” and contributed to the soundtrack for Pascal Plisson’s film “Massai, les guerriers de la pluie." Also known for his role in the group, Steps Ahead, Bona has performed on many stages such as the Adelaide International Guitar Festival and with many luminaries such as John Legend for his album, Tiki, which was also nominated for a Grammy in 2007 for “Best Contemporary World Music Album.”

Despite the fact that he spent the entirety of 2008 and 2009 on a non-stop tour, Bona released The Ten Shades of Blues, which illustrates his experience with different shades of the blues that he interacted with during his tours throughout locations such as the Sahel, Brazil, India, United States and Cameroon. Shortly after, Bona was honored by the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal with the Antonio Carlos Jobim Award; as one of seven recipients, he is distinguished as an artist in the field of world music whose influence on the evolution of jazz is widely recognized. He also received the prestigious SACEM Jazz Award (Grand Prix Jazz SACEM) in 2012 for the Jazz Grand Prize. Additionally, his certified Gold 2013 album, Bonafied, demonstrates a fusion of cultures in which he is continuously developing into a new album that will be toured internationally. With numerous awards, performances, and years of expertise, Bona has become one of the most accomplished and sought-after musicians of this generation.

The Heritage CD will be available in the U.S. Sept 16. The digital album was released worldwide earlier this summer.

Event
09/20/2016

09/16/2016, Monterey, CA, Monterey Jazz Festival - Jimmy Lyons Stage, 8:50 PM
08/04/201609/16/2016, “The African Sting”, Richard Bona, His Latest album, Heritage, and September USA Tour
Event
09/16/2016
Event
09/16/2016
Concert Start Time
8:50 PM
Venue
Monterey Jazz Festival - Jimmy Lyons Stage
Venue City, State
Monterey, CA
Ticket Price(s)
$20.00 - $150.00
Ticket URL
http://www.montereyjazzfestival.org/tickets
Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s effortless voice and skills position him as a rare African artist to have established a reputation on an international platform. MORE» More»

“Imagine an artist with Jaco Pastorious’s virtuosity, George Benson’s vocal fluidity, Joao Gilberto’s sense of song and harmony, all mixed up with African culture. Ladies and gentlemen…..Richard Bona!”
     Los Angeles Times

“Richard Bona is running his smile, his tranquility, and his musical elegance all over the world.”
     L'EXPRESS

Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an unscalable reputation on an international platform.

Bona’s latest album Heritage, his eighth, is the first one with the Afro-Cuban band “Mandekan Cubano.” This album traces the roots of Cuban music back to their origins in the Mandekan empire of the 15th century and earlier, before the slave trade and colonization split Sundiata’s unified kingdom into so many parts. The music explores the alchemy of African rhythms in Cuba. This may seem ambitious, but sounds as natural and effortless as anything Richard Bona does; together with the Mandekan Cubano, he has carefully crafted a fusion of sounds that merge cultures together through their ability to speak the universal language of music.

Originally from Cameroon, Bona remains true to his roots, with African rhythms reflected in each of his seven albums; the first three, Scenes from My Life, Reverence and Munia display his unique approach to storytelling through sounds. Seeking inspiration from his origins, the themes of Bona’s albums address international issues which mirror his desire of using music to take a stance on issues affecting the oppressed. As an artist with a purpose, he expanded into new musical territories and teamed up with Congolese star, Lokua Kanza and Antillais singer/composer Gerald Toto to create the 2004 collective, Toto, Bona, Lokua on which Bona wrote four tracks.

The trio then hit the road and toured across France; however, Bono remained in Europe to tour with guitarist Mike Stern and guest star on Japanese guitarist Kazumi Watanabe's album "Mo Bop 2." Shortly after, the pair embarked upon a tour of Japan, providing Bona with the opportunity to incorporate the culture and sounds of a new territory into his work. Furthermore, he toured with Pat Metheny and appeared as a guest on two of Bobby McFerrin’s albums, along with numerous notable collaborations.

He later garnered recognition at the Victoires du Jazz Awards where he won the trophy for "Best International Artist of 2004;" such a prestigious award confirmed his ability to appeal to a multitude of audiences ranging from jazz, pop, bossa nova, traditional, afro-beat and funk. In 2005, Bona guest appeared on Mario Canonge’s album “Rhyzome” and contributed to the soundtrack for Pascal Plisson’s film “Massai, les guerriers de la pluie." Also known for his role in the group, Steps Ahead, Bona has performed on many stages such as the Adelaide International Guitar Festival and with many luminaries such as John Legend for his album, Tiki, which was also nominated for a Grammy in 2007 for “Best Contemporary World Music Album.”

Despite the fact that he spent the entirety of 2008 and 2009 on a non-stop tour, Bona released The Ten Shades of Blues, which illustrates his experience with different shades of the blues that he interacted with during his tours throughout locations such as the Sahel, Brazil, India, United States and Cameroon. Shortly after, Bona was honored by the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal with the Antonio Carlos Jobim Award; as one of seven recipients, he is distinguished as an artist in the field of world music whose influence on the evolution of jazz is widely recognized. He also received the prestigious SACEM Jazz Award (Grand Prix Jazz SACEM) in 2012 for the Jazz Grand Prize. Additionally, his certified Gold 2013 album, Bonafied, demonstrates a fusion of cultures in which he is continuously developing into a new album that will be toured internationally. With numerous awards, performances, and years of expertise, Bona has become one of the most accomplished and sought-after musicians of this generation.

The Heritage CD will be available in the U.S. Sept 16. The digital album was released worldwide earlier this summer.

Event
09/16/2016

09/13/2016, Los Angeles, CA, Catalina's, 8:30 PM
08/04/201609/13/2016, “The African Sting”, Richard Bona, His Latest album, Heritage, and September USA Tour
Event
09/13/2016
Event
09/13/2016
Concert Start Time
8:30 PM
Venue
Catalina's
Venue St. Address
6725 Sunset Blvd
Venue City, State
Los Angeles, CA
Venue Zip
90028
Ticket Price(s)
$30.00
Ticket Phone
(323) 466-2210
Ticket URL
http://www.ticketweb.com/search?q=Richard+Bona+Mandekan+Cubano&loc=hollywood-ca
Event Notes
Performing 9/13/16 & 9/14/16
Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s effortless voice and skills position him as a rare African artist to have established a reputation on an international platform. MORE» More»

“Imagine an artist with Jaco Pastorious’s virtuosity, George Benson’s vocal fluidity, Joao Gilberto’s sense of song and harmony, all mixed up with African culture. Ladies and gentlemen…..Richard Bona!”
     Los Angeles Times

“Richard Bona is running his smile, his tranquility, and his musical elegance all over the world.”
     L'EXPRESS

Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an unscalable reputation on an international platform.

Bona’s latest album Heritage, his eighth, is the first one with the Afro-Cuban band “Mandekan Cubano.” This album traces the roots of Cuban music back to their origins in the Mandekan empire of the 15th century and earlier, before the slave trade and colonization split Sundiata’s unified kingdom into so many parts. The music explores the alchemy of African rhythms in Cuba. This may seem ambitious, but sounds as natural and effortless as anything Richard Bona does; together with the Mandekan Cubano, he has carefully crafted a fusion of sounds that merge cultures together through their ability to speak the universal language of music.

Originally from Cameroon, Bona remains true to his roots, with African rhythms reflected in each of his seven albums; the first three, Scenes from My Life, Reverence and Munia display his unique approach to storytelling through sounds. Seeking inspiration from his origins, the themes of Bona’s albums address international issues which mirror his desire of using music to take a stance on issues affecting the oppressed. As an artist with a purpose, he expanded into new musical territories and teamed up with Congolese star, Lokua Kanza and Antillais singer/composer Gerald Toto to create the 2004 collective, Toto, Bona, Lokua on which Bona wrote four tracks.

The trio then hit the road and toured across France; however, Bono remained in Europe to tour with guitarist Mike Stern and guest star on Japanese guitarist Kazumi Watanabe's album "Mo Bop 2." Shortly after, the pair embarked upon a tour of Japan, providing Bona with the opportunity to incorporate the culture and sounds of a new territory into his work. Furthermore, he toured with Pat Metheny and appeared as a guest on two of Bobby McFerrin’s albums, along with numerous notable collaborations.

He later garnered recognition at the Victoires du Jazz Awards where he won the trophy for "Best International Artist of 2004;" such a prestigious award confirmed his ability to appeal to a multitude of audiences ranging from jazz, pop, bossa nova, traditional, afro-beat and funk. In 2005, Bona guest appeared on Mario Canonge’s album “Rhyzome” and contributed to the soundtrack for Pascal Plisson’s film “Massai, les guerriers de la pluie." Also known for his role in the group, Steps Ahead, Bona has performed on many stages such as the Adelaide International Guitar Festival and with many luminaries such as John Legend for his album, Tiki, which was also nominated for a Grammy in 2007 for “Best Contemporary World Music Album.”

Despite the fact that he spent the entirety of 2008 and 2009 on a non-stop tour, Bona released The Ten Shades of Blues, which illustrates his experience with different shades of the blues that he interacted with during his tours throughout locations such as the Sahel, Brazil, India, United States and Cameroon. Shortly after, Bona was honored by the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal with the Antonio Carlos Jobim Award; as one of seven recipients, he is distinguished as an artist in the field of world music whose influence on the evolution of jazz is widely recognized. He also received the prestigious SACEM Jazz Award (Grand Prix Jazz SACEM) in 2012 for the Jazz Grand Prize. Additionally, his certified Gold 2013 album, Bonafied, demonstrates a fusion of cultures in which he is continuously developing into a new album that will be toured internationally. With numerous awards, performances, and years of expertise, Bona has become one of the most accomplished and sought-after musicians of this generation.

The Heritage CD will be available in the U.S. Sept 16. The digital album was released worldwide earlier this summer.

Event
09/13/2016

09/09/2016, New York, NY, Club Bonafide, 7:30 PM & 9:30 PM
08/04/201609/09/2016, “The African Sting”, Richard Bona, His Latest album, Heritage, and September USA Tour
Event
09/09/2016
Event
09/09/2016
Doors Open
6:00 PM
Concert Start Time
7:30 PM & 9:30 PM
Venue
Club Bonafide
Venue St. Address
212 E 52nd St
Venue City, State
New York, NY
Venue Zip
10022
Ticket Price(s)
$30.00 - $40.00
Ticket Phone
(646) 918-6189
Ticket URL
http://clubbonafide.com/event/club-bonafide-one-year-anniversary-featuring-richard-bona-mandekan-cubano/
Event Notes
Performing 9/9/16 and 9/10/16
Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s effortless voice and skills position him as a rare African artist to have established a reputation on an international platform. MORE» More»

“Imagine an artist with Jaco Pastorious’s virtuosity, George Benson’s vocal fluidity, Joao Gilberto’s sense of song and harmony, all mixed up with African culture. Ladies and gentlemen…..Richard Bona!”
     Los Angeles Times

“Richard Bona is running his smile, his tranquility, and his musical elegance all over the world.”
     L'EXPRESS

Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an unscalable reputation on an international platform.

Bona’s latest album Heritage, his eighth, is the first one with the Afro-Cuban band “Mandekan Cubano.” This album traces the roots of Cuban music back to their origins in the Mandekan empire of the 15th century and earlier, before the slave trade and colonization split Sundiata’s unified kingdom into so many parts. The music explores the alchemy of African rhythms in Cuba. This may seem ambitious, but sounds as natural and effortless as anything Richard Bona does; together with the Mandekan Cubano, he has carefully crafted a fusion of sounds that merge cultures together through their ability to speak the universal language of music.

Originally from Cameroon, Bona remains true to his roots, with African rhythms reflected in each of his seven albums; the first three, Scenes from My Life, Reverence and Munia display his unique approach to storytelling through sounds. Seeking inspiration from his origins, the themes of Bona’s albums address international issues which mirror his desire of using music to take a stance on issues affecting the oppressed. As an artist with a purpose, he expanded into new musical territories and teamed up with Congolese star, Lokua Kanza and Antillais singer/composer Gerald Toto to create the 2004 collective, Toto, Bona, Lokua on which Bona wrote four tracks.

The trio then hit the road and toured across France; however, Bono remained in Europe to tour with guitarist Mike Stern and guest star on Japanese guitarist Kazumi Watanabe's album "Mo Bop 2." Shortly after, the pair embarked upon a tour of Japan, providing Bona with the opportunity to incorporate the culture and sounds of a new territory into his work. Furthermore, he toured with Pat Metheny and appeared as a guest on two of Bobby McFerrin’s albums, along with numerous notable collaborations.

He later garnered recognition at the Victoires du Jazz Awards where he won the trophy for "Best International Artist of 2004;" such a prestigious award confirmed his ability to appeal to a multitude of audiences ranging from jazz, pop, bossa nova, traditional, afro-beat and funk. In 2005, Bona guest appeared on Mario Canonge’s album “Rhyzome” and contributed to the soundtrack for Pascal Plisson’s film “Massai, les guerriers de la pluie." Also known for his role in the group, Steps Ahead, Bona has performed on many stages such as the Adelaide International Guitar Festival and with many luminaries such as John Legend for his album, Tiki, which was also nominated for a Grammy in 2007 for “Best Contemporary World Music Album.”

Despite the fact that he spent the entirety of 2008 and 2009 on a non-stop tour, Bona released The Ten Shades of Blues, which illustrates his experience with different shades of the blues that he interacted with during his tours throughout locations such as the Sahel, Brazil, India, United States and Cameroon. Shortly after, Bona was honored by the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal with the Antonio Carlos Jobim Award; as one of seven recipients, he is distinguished as an artist in the field of world music whose influence on the evolution of jazz is widely recognized. He also received the prestigious SACEM Jazz Award (Grand Prix Jazz SACEM) in 2012 for the Jazz Grand Prize. Additionally, his certified Gold 2013 album, Bonafied, demonstrates a fusion of cultures in which he is continuously developing into a new album that will be toured internationally. With numerous awards, performances, and years of expertise, Bona has become one of the most accomplished and sought-after musicians of this generation.

The Heritage CD will be available in the U.S. Sept 16. The digital album was released worldwide earlier this summer.

Event
09/09/2016