Floridita London is proud to present Darwin’s Playlist, a vibrant and unique show inspired by the story of Man on earth. Follow the journey from the plains of Africa to the mountains of the Middle East, stopping off to experience the sounds of India and the Balkans. The evening will culminate in the arrival at the New World for an exploration of the roots of contemporary music.
Featuring over 20 internationally acclaimed musicians, this unique guide to the world will be narrated by the master of ceremonies, Gil Jobic, who will introduce each stage of the journey. From the African kora to the Indian dhol drum, each guest artist will be bringing the time-honoured music of their home-land to the Floridita stage for one incredible evening.
The backbone of the show will be one of the most versatile bands in the UK, The Groove Redemption. Led by Oded Kafri, this 10-piece group consists of hand-picked musicians from around the world, each chosen for their versatility and breadth of expertise.
About the Artists
Darwin’s Playlist is a true world music project featuring over 20 of the finest musicians from each continent – including:
KADIALY KOUYATE, a Senegalese kora virtuoso and an accomplished singer.
“Kadialy Kouyate showcases his fleet-fingered skills on this mesmerising instrument, complementing it with his hauntingly, darkly beautiful voice, to create a Toumani Diabate-meets-Youssou N’Dour sound"- Time Out
JOHNNY KALSI, a British Indian Dhol drum performer residing in London. He is a former member of Alaap and Transglobal Underground and the founder of the Dhol Foundation. He also performs with the Afro Celt Sound System and The Imagined Village.
ABDELKADER SAADOUN, from Khemis Miliana in Algeria, a few miles away from the birth place of RaÏ. He started to play RaÏ music in his home country, accompanied by an accordion, guitar, kit drum, bass and percussion. After moving to the UK, Saadoun formed a new RaÏ group that have since graced the stages of WOMAD, The National Theatre, The Barbican and The World Peace Music Awards in Bali.
KOBY ISRAELITE, born in Tel Aviv, Israel. He is a multi-instrumentalist a well as a talented composer, producer, songwriter and band leader. With an ability to play accordion, percussion, piano, guitar, clarinet, flute, bouzouki, mandolin, bass and saxophone, his music is an eclectic mix of gypsy, punk, jazz, Middle Eastern, Balkan and metal. Through John Zorn’s Tzadik Records label, Koby has released five critically acclaimed albums.
BALUJI SHRIVASTAV, one of the great sitarists to emerge from India. Along with solo sitar albums, he also has solo releases on dilruba (fretted fiddle) and Surbhar (bass sitar). Baluji’s style has been described as “lush and utterly fresh” (Scotsman) making him an accessible artist whose performances are infused with a warmth and humour that help connect audiences of all ages and backgrounds with Indian Classical Music.
Nestled within the heart of the bustling West End, Floridita emulates the 1930s style of the legendary El Floridita, creating the perfect blend of glamour and decadence from a by-gone era.
Combining an iconic, vibrant restaurant with the infamous Floridita Cocktail bar, and boasting the most impressive selection of rums in Europe, Floridita has hosted some of the finest Cuban bands in the world. In its previous incarnations, the building has also played host to some of the most famous bands of the 60s and 70s, from The Rolling Stones to Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. Now, Floridita has an unrivalled reputation for showcasing incredible artists from around the world, and is proud and delighted to be hosting Darwin’s Playlist.