Orchestra Baobab is a band from Senegal, started in the late 1970s. They started as the band for a club in Dakar (the capital of Senegal) named the Baobab Club. Much of their music is influenced by Cuban music, which actually influenced most of Senegal's music at the time.

In 1982, Orchestra Baobab created a record in what has been called a "magical studio session", which later was released in France, and mostly by way of bootlegged tapes made it to the rest of the West. Recently, Nonesuch Records and World Circuit re-released this record, along with more songs from the same recording session, on a CD called "Pirate's Choice". It is very good. In particular, the songs "Utrus Horas", "Soldadi" are very good. Baobab also just recently released a brand-new album, after coming back together (they broke up in the 80s). The album is called "Specialists in All Styles", which I haven't heard yet, but it is probably good as well.

Orchestra Baobab consists of 5 singers, who sing in a combination of Spanish, Wolof (a main language in Senegal), French, and other languages. The band also features a saxophonist who does solos, and an especially incredible guitar soloist, Barthelemy Attisso. His dreamy riffs and incredible timing are essential parts of Orchestra Baobab's sound.

All in all, a very good band. I highly recommend them.

The official Orchestra Baobab website: http://www.orchestrabaobab.com/

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