ECHO, is the third album from harpist Catrin Finch (Wales) and kora player and singer Seckou Keita (Senegal), which is releasing worldwide on May 27th, 2022.
The album celebrates the tenth anniversary of an extraordinary partnership between the two virtuosos whose previous releases include 2018’s acclaimed album SOAR, and their 2013 debut Clychau Dibon, both of which garnered industry awards across the globe. ECHO marks the third part of this remarkable trilogy.
It’s been ten years since Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita formed a duo. The seamless virtuosic union of the 47 strings of Catrin Finch’s harp with the 22 strings on each neck of Seckou Keita’s double kora – two cultures, two histories and two personalities merged into one atmospheric musical journey – has become a rare global music hit. Finch and Keita create music that not only champions their exquisite instruments but blends elements of new and old music from the Western Classical, Celtic, folk, contemporary and West African song traditions, each echoing the other in an evolving tale of mutual discovery and delight.
Lockdown enforced a separation, a chance to reflect and devote time to other projects, and calm the frenetic pace of the previous years of touring, totalling over 200 performances together and appearances at leading global music festivals including WOMAD, Shambala, Sfinks, Chicago World Music Festival, Hay Festival, Lorient Interceltique Festival, Sydney Opera House and the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall.
By the time they finally met again in 2021, Catrin and Seckou rediscovered their magical ability to ‘blend hearts, minds and fingers’ and find their ‘echo’ in each other.
‘Sublimely beautiful’ MARK RADCLIFFE, BBC RADIO 2
Snippets of tunes were drawn from the ‘tune bank’ the pair had accumulated during their countless soundcheck jams in pre-Covid days. Others were gleaned from side-projects, a ballet score, TV commissions, festival collaborations, works-in-progress and experimentation.
ECHO proclaims the tender triumph of an extraordinary partnership, the dissolution of opposites into one seamless musical expression of our common humanity. “With this album, it feels like we’ve reached our place, musically and creatively,” says Catrin. This is the echo they will leave behind – the echo of dear ones now departed, of beating hearts, of music, of love. “That’s what continues to travel through space and time,” Seckou says, “even after the last note has been played, or the last word has been sung.”
ECHO releases worldwide on 27th May 2022 on the bendigedig label, followed by UK touring starting in May 2022.
Tour Dates as follows:
FRI, 6 MAY Galeri Caernarfon Caernarfon
SAT, 7 MAY Taliesin Arts Centre Swansea
SAT, 14 MAY Anvil Arts Basingstoke
THU, 19 MAY Christchurch Centre Henley-On-Thames
FRI, 20 MAY The Stables MK Milton Keynes
SAT, 21 MAY Pocklington Arts Centre York
SUN, 22 MAY Howard Assembly Room Leeds
THU, 26 MAY St George’s Bristol
FRI, 27 MAY Huntingdon Hall Worcester
SAT, 28 MAY Y Tabernacl, Machynlleth
SUN, 29 MAY Theatr Mwldan Mwldan Cardigan
WED, 1 JUN St David’s Hall Cardiff
TUE, 7 JUN The Apex · Bury St Edmunds
WED, 8 JUN Union Chapel London
FRI, 10 JUN The Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh Edinburgh
Visit catrinfinchandseckoukeita.com for full concert details.