About Denbaya

Denbaya preforms African Music and afro-jazz . If you are looking for an African band for your event or fundraiser please contact us

Denabya Musician's Collective

Marco Chelo

Marco is a tenor sax player based in New York and the co-founder of the New York Jazz Workshop School of Music. Always interested in Afro Caribbean music, Marco had the good fortune of travelling to Cuba, Africa and Jamaica as well as playing with many international artists. Notably, he was a guest of Fela Kuti at the Kalakuta compound in Ikeja, Lagos,Nigeria. Marco is also the sax player of the jazz band "il collettivo
Marco is Denbaya's band manager and started the record label and publishing company Griot's GarageProductions.

Marco Chelo

Makane Kouyate

Percussions , Vocals, Acustic Guitar
Born into a Griot family in Segou, Mali, West Africa, Makane Kouyate has been playing the drums since he was five years old. As a young man, Makane worked for several years with Ballet National of Mali, and at 14 began traveling and performing throughout West Africa as lead drummer with the group Super Biton. He has performed with artists such as Selif Keita, singer and guitarist, Habib Koite’and Sadjo Kouyate,’ Mamadou Diabate ensemble, Manding Jata, Sidiki Conde’dance company, and with his brother, the renown balafone player Balla Kouyate. Makane currently resides in New York and performs across the country at numerous clubs and festivals. He has taught African percussion at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, the Queens Conservatory of Music, Spring Valley School, The South Bronx Summer Camp, and more recently became part of the New York Jazz Workshop faculty.

Makane Kouyate

 

Yacuba Diabate

Kora, ngoni and songwriter Yacuba Diabate is a renown and talented musician from the griot family Diabate, he brings a unique sound to Denbaya

 

Yacuba Diabate

John Austria

Piano and Keybords
Very active in the New York scene, John Austria comes from a family of musicians. John is an extremely talended musician who has performed in venues such as the Blue Note, Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Jazz Standard, Dizzy Gillespie's Bahai Center,Sweet Rhythm, Saint Nick's Pub,and many more.

John Austria

Balla Kouyate

Balla Kouyaté, a virtuoso of the balaphone, plays two instruments in order to get a chromatic scale, allowing him to play any genre of music in any key. His speed is astounding as he moves effortlessly between the two balafons, delivering his signature roulements and complex improvisations. Balla has performed at festivals and venues across the country including the Chicago World Music Festival, Musikfest, and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in DC, to name a few. In 2010 Balla was honored to receive the Massachusetts Cultural Councils Fellowship in the Traditional Arts.

Balla Kouyate

Thierno Camara

Composer / singer / songwriter / bassist Thierno Camara from Senegal, West Africa is well known in World and Jazz fusion circles . As an experienced well traveled musician who has mastered an art form by playing professionally since childhood, his sound surpasses genre. During his long career as an international musician Thierno Camara has written, arranged, recorded, performed and toured with a diversity of great artists whose styles range from Traditional, to Native Folk, to Classic Jazz, to Contemporary Hip Hop, Reggae, and Rock. He is also founder of Waaw band, which plays strictly a folk style of Senegalese music called Mbalax from his native land.

Thierno Camara

Charlie Caldarola

 

Charlie Caldarola

Jose Rosario

Originally from Cuba, Jose Ramon Rosario is a very talented percussionist and a well know actor. He brings the latin flavor to the band's African beat creating a unique rythmic canvas.
Jose Rosario