Chicago (Illinois), USA – Ugandan musician Samite will be performing at HotHouse in Chicago on Friday, February 24. The concert begins at 7:30pm, $12 in Advance, $12 at the door, HotHouse MembersFree (21 & Over).
Samite was born and raised in Uganda, where his grandfather taught him to play the traditional flute. His primary schooling was within the King’s Courtyard where the royal musicians played for the King. That daily influence permanently instilled within young Samite, the rhythms and patterns of the traditional music of his people the Baganda.
Recognizing his talents, a high school teacher in Kampala put a western flute in his hands putting him on the path to become one of the most highly acclaimed
flutists in East Africa.
In 1982 he fled to Kenya as a political refugee, where he played with the Bacchus Club Jazz Band and the popular African Heritage Band. Increasingly drawn to instruments and rhythms from the traditional Ugandan music scene, he eventually played solo at the Mount Kenya Safari Club in Nairobi. Delivering his mellifluous vocals in his mother tongue, Luganda, he mesmerized audiences with original compositions played on kalimba (finger-piano), marimba (wooden ! xylophone), litungu (seven-stringed Kenyan instrument) and various flutes; traditional and western.
Immigrating to the United States in 1987, Samite now makes his home in Ithaca,
New York. Samite’s sixth and newest CD is Tunula Eno, released by Triloka/Artemis.
Samite’s previously released CDs include his first tour-de force Shanachie release Abaana Bakesa (Dance My Children, Dance). His second release, Pearl of Africa Reborn , contains recordings which retain the essence of African tradition. Samite’s third US album Silina Musango, released by Xenophile, is a joyful collection of melodic, trans-cultural songs which are the heartfelt of Samite’s music. This CD reached #2 on the CMJ World Music Chart in the summer of 1997. Samite’s fourth worldwide release Stars to Share (Windham Hill Records) reinforces his reputation as an artist who has made a career out of confounding expectations.
Samite spent the summer of 1999 traveling through parts of Africa and filmed the PBS documentary, Song of the Refugee. This film along with Samite’s fifth CD release Kambu Angels was inspired by a desire to present African refugee’s hope for the future in spite of the suffering and loss they have endured. Media coverage during the darkest days of crisis concentrated on violence and destruction, with little or no coverage of the reconciliation and healing process now underway. One of Samite’s goals is to open peoples’ minds and hearts to the common threads of human concerns, conveying optimism through stories and song. “I am convinced that we are all moved by the same desires, needs and emotions, regardless of the language in which those feelings are expressed“.