Every time Richard Bona makes an appearance, the audience’s admiration for him grows. This time he’ll be appearing in a club atmosphere. Ever since the days of Marcus Miller, no bass player had proven to be such a complete musician. He also adds his falsetto vocals to the mix, with a style reminiscent of Milton Nascimento. In the Babelic beauty of his work we can find echoes of the achievements of Joe Zawinul and Pat Metheny, exquisitely ethnic ambiences from his native Cameroon and snippets of Afro-Caribbean energy. The result is music with an aura of passion that leaves us perplexed at the first listen, music that transcends all boundaries.
At the peak of his popularity, made possible thanks to his appearances with Larry Coryell, Bobby McFerrin, Joe Zawinul and Mike Stern, Bona’s debut as a solo performer came in 1999 with the album “Scenes from my Life”. Since then, his imagination never ceases to surprise. That’s to be expected in someone like him, if you consider that he learnt jazz from a collection of borrowed Chet Baker albums, after he’d received an offer he couldn’t refuse. The French owner of a jazz club had asked him to put together a resident band to perform at the club. We will never know if this is a true story, but the idea is so appealing that it ought to be!