Kings of Afrobeat groove heading to The Grand for hypnotic Clitheroe gig

The Police conquered the airwaves with their worldwide hits Roxanne, Message in A Bottle and Walking on The Moon.
London Astrobeat Orchestra, who are gigging at The Grand, Clitheroe, on June 1. (s)London Astrobeat Orchestra, who are gigging at The Grand, Clitheroe, on June 1. (s)
London Astrobeat Orchestra, who are gigging at The Grand, Clitheroe, on June 1. (s)

Sting, Stewart Copeland and Andy Summers sparked with the raw energy of punk rock and the instincts of a laid-back jazz trio on a Sunday afternoon.

And it provided the perfect blend for their debut album, Outlandos d’Amour, one of the most important LPs of the seventies.

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Now the groovy sound of London Astrobeat Orchestra is re- arranging those mighty pop anthems and lacing them with a traditional and hypnotic African beat.

“The Police wrote so many fantastic and classically written songs,” said band leader Edd Bateman, who brings the Astrobeat Orchestra to the Grand on June 1.

“The Police’s sound, embracing reggae and that New Wave energy, really lends itself to what we do, so we can’t wait to bring the show to Clitheroe.

“It is an area of the country that made a deep impression on everybody when we appeared at the Beat-Herder festival, which had an amazing vibe.

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“We’ve heard some great things about the Grand too, so I’m sure it will be a special gig.”

The orchestra have already enjoyed huge success with their extraordinary spin on Talking Heads’ classic albums.

So much so, the Afrobeat groove kings were nicknamed the African Talking Heads after a string of sold-out shows at London’s Jazz Café.

Part two of the Clitheroe concert will see the orchestra celebrate Talking Heads’ and rearranging their widely loved material with the care it deserves.

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In his book, How Music Works, Talking Heads singer David Byrne describes how a more African approach to music making informed the creation of their albums Remain in Light and Speaking in Tongues.

“A lot of Afrobeat vibes run through the finest Talking Heads songs and they work really well in a West African style and feel quite natural,” added Edd.

“I’ve always had a deep love of African music, visiting Congo, Zimbabwe, Senegal, and Mali, performing with many African musicians.”

The following day musical collective Maisha, led by drummer Jake Long, make their debut at the Grand.

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Expect an unmissable evening of rhythmic music that firmly places Maisha at the forefront of modern British Jazz.

Saturday, June 1: Afrobeat Orchestra.

Sunday, June 2: Maisha.

Grand Theatre, 01200 421599,