Adama Dembele- lead vocals, djembe, congas, percussion

Adama Dembele is a master djembéfola (djembe player) from Ivory Coast, West Africa. Born into a family of Malian and Ivorian musicians, he has toured several continents with various major acts such Oumou Sangare, Salif Keita, Affou Keita, Sogona Djata and many others. Adama has played in several drum and dance companies such as Yelemba d’Abidjan, Ensemble Koteba, Congoba and many more.

Before coming to the United States Adama founded Djembeso Drum and Dance Ensemble. “Djembeso” in the West African dialect Bambará means “the house of djembe”. Adama chose that name because his family has been playing the djembe for 33 generations and his native home was known as the house where the djembe is played. People from all over the world have come there to study and experience this rich cultural tradition.

In 2005 Adama moved to the US to perform and teach the sacred art of West African drumming. He has taught his music to people of all ages and experience levels, from New York to California all the way to Asheville, NC, where he currently resides.  Be it private lessons, or large groups of school children, or intensive workshops, Adama has been sharing this music and culture in this country for almost a decade now.

Aside from teaching, Adama also shares his music through performance.  His current project is called Zansa, which means a mix or blend.  The group plays original afropop and afrobeat music inspired by traditional rhythms and songs of the Ivory Coast, and also the modern urban afropop style called zouglou. Adama was also a part of afrobeat ensemble Afromotive and is a frequent guest of afro-surf-rock-international country outfit Toubab Krewe.