Karamoja: Belgian-Ugandan reggae band for final Kampala concert


When the invitation for the music festival Nyege Nyege came, the Karamoja group members soon decided to give their journey a bit more ooomph. The idea was born to make a documentary about how a band looks for its roots and new musical influences and challenges. ‘We will bring our music everywhere, from a local market to a refugee camp‘ Kenny Decatelle explained.

With their tour, Karamoja’s musicians wanted to entertain the local people as Kenny continued: ‘In Uganda, many refugees reside in South Sudan civil war, and we want to entertain our music for a day‘.

In addition to entertainment, the band also provided material assistance. ‘We have collected money to buy school material and musical instruments, so that we can help the local people in concrete terms‘ added Kenny Decatelle.

For the band, the trip is also a discovery tour of the group’s roots. Singer Isaac Simba was born in Uganda and the name Karamoja refers to an arid region in the country. ‘Part of the soul of our project calls us back to Uganda’ concluded Decatelle.

The NyegeNyege Festival was supported by Brussels Airlines (www.brusselsairlines.com) and notably was Isaac Simba on the same flight into Entebbe ahead of the festival as this author.

Wrote a source close to the airline about the last concert of Karamoja, before returning home to Belgium: The Ronse-based Belgo-Ugandan reggae band “Karamoja” has been on tour in Uganda for the last seven days now. The highlight of this tour has undoubtedly been their performance at the renowned Nyege Nyege music festival in Jinja last weekend. They are now currently on a literal journey of “self-discovery”, a quest to unearth the roots of their unique name “Karamoja”.

This journey saw them inevitably head out to the Karamoja region of Uganda, where they immersed themselves with the local communities and their music, and in so doing, giving the magnificent Karamoja landscapes, its people and the local sounds, a very special place in their own eclectic blend of Belgo–Ugandan music.

On September 12, they are back in Kampala for a final climactic concert at Jazzville at 8pm, one that will be tinged with the newly discovered & inspirational sights and sounds of the Karamoja region, making this final concert not only special but emotional for the band and unique in its own distinct way. They will share the stage that night with the Joash and Urban qulture band. Entrance fee will be 10.000 UGX.


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