SLYKUMU is a collaboration arranged by Griffin Brady, Master of Arts from Goddard College, founder and teacher at the Slyboots School of Music and Art in Buffalo, NY and percussionist in the jazz group, On The Sly. On Brady’s first unaccompanied trip to Ghana, West Africa in 2004, he studied at the Dagara Music Center just outside of the capital city of Accra- a school founded by Brady’s mentor and xylophone father, Bernard Woma. During this residency he met the members of the Saakumu Dance Troupe who work for Bernard Woma, not only as musicians and dancers- but as teachers at the DMC.
It was at that time that the collaborative minds of Bernard Woma and Griffin Brady began to formulate a plan to bring Saakumu to the US. In 2008 the plans manifested into actions and 15 men and women of the Saakumu Dance Troupe traveled to the US for the first time ever. Packed tightly in Brady’s short school bus (which normally transported the 3-5 piece jazz group, On The Sly) the crew traveled over 15,000 miles doing 99 shows in 49 days.
Saakumu has been back every year since to tour colleges and universities across the US with Brady as serving as road manager, driver, booking agent, collaborating musician and educator. This 2014-2015 season marks their 8th tour together and their 8th time acting as artists in residence at the Slyboots School.
Formed at SUNY Fredonia in 2002, On the Sly hit the road right off the bat, touring regionally and nationally from 2003-2010. Their music is original and inspired. Featuring Andrew Moore on bass, guitar and vocals alongside Griffin Brady on drums, percussion and vocals and frequently showcasing guest artists on various instruments from around the world, On the Sly’s shows are always an exciting and memorable experience. On the Sly handles all of the booking and managing internally and has created a plethora of life long networking partnerships as a result of this grassroots action. Many of the visiting artists from around the world that the Slyboots School features are perfect examples of the partnerships made through their touring efforts.
On the Sly alumni include: Mike Sisto, Joseph Glarner, Stuart Fuchs, Wade Benford, Adam Bronstien, Greg Lott, Kengo Yamada, Dan Reitz, Ben Butera, Tad Dziekonski, Rocco DellaNeve, Kevin Urso, Brian DeAngelo, Ryan Campbell, Zack Mikida, Dan Keller, Dan Jeswald and Nick Schwartz.
SLYKUMU is the creative manifestation of cultural exchange, love, friendship and communication through music in our global village. SLYKUMU is the sound of social barriers breaking and the collective rejoicing of mankind. SLYKUMU is coming- are you ready?