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Angélique Kidjo

Biography

Afro-funk, reggae, samba, salsa, gospel, jazz, Zairean rhumba, zouk, and makossa are combined with the music of soulful Benin-born, Paris-based vocalist Angélique Kidjo. Because the discharge of her self-produced debut single album, Quite, in 1988, Kidjo continues to be embraced with the worldwide press. Her albums have already been strengthened by efforts from top-notch visitor musicians and manufacturers. Parakou, her initial internationally distributed record, highlighted jazz keyboardist Jasper van’t Hof, the first choice of Pili Pili, a Holland-based Afro-jazz music group with whom Kidjo got performed on the Montreux Jazz Celebration in 1987. Logozo, documented in Miami in 1991 and made by Joe Galdo of Miami Audio Machine, highlighted Branford Marsalis on saxophone. Marsalis afterwards performed on Kidjo’s record Oremi. The record features Kidjo performing duets with Cassandra Wilson (“Under no circumstances Understand”) and Kelly Cost (“Open up Your Eye”). Kidjo’s most ambitious record, Fifa (1996), highlighted a lot more than 100 percussionists, flutists, cowbell and berimbau players, performers, and dancers from Benin and something track offering Carlos Santana. Kidjo’s hubby, Jean Hébrail, a French bass participant and composer she fulfilled in 1987, provides played a significant role within the documenting of her albums. The girl of the celebrity, dancer, and theatrical manufacturer, Kidjo was created in Quidah, a seaside town in the Western world African nation of Benin. Inheriting her mother’s like of executing, she produced her stage debut with her mother’s theatrical troupe. Motivated by the rock and roll, pop, and spirit music of Jimi Hendrix, Santana, Miriam Makeba, Adam Dark brown, and Aretha Franklin, she was performing appropriately by her 20th birthday. Although she documented an album, Quite (made by Cameroon-based vocalist Ekambi Excellent), that yielded popular one, “Ninive,” the oppressive politics environment of Benin led her to relocate to Paris in 1980. Although modern tools and electronics performed an important function in the documenting of her initial four albums, Kidjo came back to her traditional origins with Fifa. Equipped with eight-track tape recorders and microphones, Kidjo along with a group of engineers journeyed to Benin to record traditional music artists, performers, and dancers. The recording was finished during documenting classes in Paris, London, LA, and SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA. With her following record, 1998’s Oremi, Kidjo came back to her futuristic approach. Incorporating components of hip-hop and Afro-Celtic grooves, Oremi highlighted a reconstructed interpretation of Jimi Hendrix’s “Voodoo Kid (Slight Come back).” Kidjo’s enthusiastic existence was evident for the video of her worldwide strike “Agolo,” from her record Aye (1994). Made by Will Mowatt of Spirit II Spirit and longtime Prince collaborator David Z, the video was nominated to get a Grammy Prize. Kidjo’s songs have already been highlighted for the soundtracks of such movies as THE BEST Season, Road Fighter, and Ace Ventura: When Character Calls. Because the brand-new millennium got underway, Kidjo agreed upon to Columbia and prepped on her behalf major-label debut. Discovering musical components of her indigenous Benin and the ones of northeastern Brazil, Dark Ivory Spirit premiered in 2002. Oyaya!, which highlighted a cooperation with Dave Matthews, was released two years afterwards. Kidjo then joined up with makes with Razor & Connect for the Might 2007 discharge of Djin Djin. Another Razor & Connect album, Õÿö, implemented this year 2010 and highlighted guest areas from Roy Hargrove, John Tale, and Dianne Reeves. Nature Rising, a Disc representation of the uplifting live particular Kidjo taped at WGBH studios, made an appearance from Razor & Connect in 2012. The record Eve, her tribute to the ladies of Africa, was released in early 2014. 3 years previous, Kidjo played some concerts using the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg, executed by Gast Waltzing. This program positioned her own tunes — and a choice collection of addresses — inside a lush, 110-piece orchestral establishing fronted from the vocalist and her music group. They reprised their cooperation on Sings, a studio room documenting released by 429 Information in early 2015.

Quick Facts


Full Name Angélique Kidjo
Profession Actor, Composer, Singer-songwriter, Music artist, Choreographer
Education Berklee College of Music
Nationality French, American, Beninois
Spouse Jean Hébrail
Parents Yvonne Kidjo, Franck Kidjo
Siblings Oscar Kidjo
Awards Grammy Award for Best World Music Album, Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album, Africa Movie Academy Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Danish Grammy Award for Foreign Female Singer of the Year
Music Groups Band Aid 30, Les Amazones d'Afrique
Music Songs Agolo, Wombo Lombo, Malaïka, Petite Fleur, Afirika, Batonga, Move On Up, Gimme Shelter, Wé-Wé, Blewu, We Are One, Lonlon, M'Baamba, Kelele, Voodoo Child, Salala, Loloye, Adouma, Iwoya, Samba pa ti, Naïma, Ominira, Awalole, Sedjedo, Agbalagba, Ebile, Shango Wa, Kulumbu, Babalao, Ae Ae, I've Got Dreams to Remember, Atcha houn
Albums Black Ivory Soul, Djin Djin, Oyaya!, Spirit Rising, Sings, Oremi, Logozo, République Amazone, Ayé, Keep on Moving: The Best of Angélique Kidjo, Parakou, Õÿö, Fifa, ÕŸYÖ, Afirika


  • Facts
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  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
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Soundtrack

Soundtrack

TitleYearStatusCharacter
How to Let Go of the World and Love All the Things Climate Can't Change 2016 Documentary performer: "Summertime"
Blended 2014 performer: "Yaki Yaki" / writer: "Yaki Yaki"
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon 2010 TV Series performer - 1 episode
Disgrace 2008 lyrics: "Agolo" / music: "Agolo" / performer: "Agolo"
Africa Unite: A Celebration of Bob Marley's 60th Birthday 2008 Documentary performer: "Afrika", "Zelie" - as Angelique Kidjo / writer: "Afrika" - as Angelique Carmen Kidjo
Weeds 2007 TV Series performer - 1 episode
Blood Diamond 2006 performer: "The Retreat Song Jikele Maweni"
Six Feet Under TV Series performer - 1 episode, 2005 writer - 1 episode, 2005
Sahara 2005 performer: "Wombo Lombo" / writer: "Wombo Lombo"
Changing Times 2004 performer: "Tumba", "Okan bale", "Les petits riens" / writer: "Tumba", "Okan bale"
The Truth About Charlie 2002 lyrics: "Les Enfants Perdus" / performer: "Les Enfants Perdus"
The Wild Thornberrys Movie 2002 "Iwoya" / performer: "Iwoya"
Loin 2001 performer: "Senie"
Bimboland 1998 performer: "Yaki Yaki" / writer: "Yaki Yaki"
Woubi Cheri 1998 Documentary performer: "Malaïka"
Krippendorf's Tribe 1998 performer: "The Sound of Drums" - as Angelique Kidjo / writer: "The Sound of Drums" - as Angelique Kidjo
Oro verde 1997 TV Series performer: "Agolo"
Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls 1995 performer: "Ife" / writer: "Ife"
Street Fighter 1994 performer: "Worth Fighting For" / writer: "Worth Fighting For"
Caro diario 1993 performer: "Batonga" / writer: "Batonga" - as A. Kidjo
Ma saison préférée 1993 performer: "Malaïka"

Music Department

Music Department

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Women, War & Peace 2011 TV Series vocals - 2 episodes
Wide Angle 2004-2009 TV Series documentary composer - 3 episodes

Actress

Actress

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Ebola: In Praise of Prevention 2016 TV Movie voice
The CEO 2016 Dr. Zara Zimmerman
Mother of George 2013 Ma Nike
People I Know 2002 Ms. Thuli Kani (as Angelique Kidjo)

Composer

Composer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Bintou in Paris 1995 Documentary short

Producer

Producer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Angelique Kidjo & Friends: Spirit Rising 2011 TV Movie executive producer

Thanks

Thanks

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Gershwin's Summertime: The Song That Conquered the World 2011 TV Movie documentary thanks - as Angelique Kidjo

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
CNN Newsroom 2014 TV Series Herself - Unicef Imagine Campaign
Mysteries of the Human Voice 2014 TV Movie documentary Herself
Vivement dimanche 2014 TV Series Himself
Tavis Smiley 2010-2014 TV Series Herself - Guest / Herself
Piaf: Hymnes à la môme 2013 TV Special Herself
Experience Montreux 2013 Documentary Herself
Gershwin's Summertime: The Song That Conquered the World 2011 TV Movie documentary Herself (as Angelique Kidjo)
Solidarity of Arts 2011 TV Movie Herself
The Mo'Nique Show 2011 TV Series Herself
Mama Africa 2011 Documentary Herself
Angelique Kidjo & Friends: Spirit Rising 2011 TV Movie Herself
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon 2010 TV Series Herself - Musical Guest
2010 FIFA World Cup Kick-Off Celebration Concert 2010 TV Special Performer
Later... With Jools Holland 1994-2010 TV Series Herself
Half the Sky: A One Night Event 2010 TV Movie Herself
Still Bill 2009 Documentary Herself
39th NAACP Image Awards 2008 TV Special Herself
Africa Unite: A Celebration of Bob Marley's 60th Birthday 2008 Documentary Herself (as Angelique Kidjo)
Best of the Jammys, Volume Two 2007 Video Herself
Late Show with David Letterman 2007 TV Series Herself - Musical Guest
Live Earth 2007 TV Special documentary Herself
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno 1992-2007 TV Series Herself
Newport Jazz Festival 2006 TV Movie Herself
Herbie Hancock: Possibilities 2006 Documentary Herself
Live 8 2005 TV Special documentary Herself
Lightning in a Bottle 2004 Documentary Herself
Global Balalaika Show 2003 Video documentary Herself - performer
Nobel Peace Prize Concert 2002 TV Special documentary Herself
The Making and Meaning of 'We Are Family' 2002 Documentary Herself
Taratata 1996-1997 TV Series Herself
Vincent à l'heure 1995 TV Series Herself
ZDF Hitparade 1994 TV Series Herself

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Africa Straight Up 2012 Documentary short Himself

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#Quote
1 People say 'la musique africaine', but I say 'les musiques africaines'. They refuse to recognize that Africa is a continent with a huge number of different cultures and languages and music. That's always been the difficulty of my career. People expect all Africans to have the same sound more or less, as if you can lump them all together.
2 Benin has little tradition of harmony in the south where I come from. The north has a lot more, but the south has more rhythms, which are absolutely fantastic and people don't know them. There's one village specifically dedicated to the drum. When you get there you can go and choose your tree, cut it down and make your percussion from it. The challenge for me is adding the harmonies that the rhythms give.
3 I come from this diversity and richness that's Benin, where there are fifty different languages. I speak four of them. I never know in advance which language will come when I start to write.The song leads me to the language.


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