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RWANDA, you should be loved

by The Good Ones

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agutterfan Three Rwandan farmers, survivors of the genocide, playing newly written songs on acoustic guitars & percussion, but within their musical tradition. Recorded in their hill farm, where they have no running water or electricity, their music is positive and celebratory, though some deal with their tragedies, including the death of a wife. With a few western artists contributing, like Corin Tucker of Sleater-Kinney. I wish them all a long & peaceful life. Favorite track: Please Come Back To Me (feat. Corin Tucker).
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masterpavol Avec Johnny Clegg, j'avais découvert les Ladysmith Black Mambazo, la world music m'avait conquis, et les Good Ones sont une petite perle musicale, merci à Djubaka de France Inter ;-) Favorite track: The Farmer.
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released November 8, 2019

Produced & engineered by Ian Brennan

Adrien Kazigira Vocals & Guitar.

Javan Mahoro Background Vocals, Additional
Percussion, Guitar & Lead Vocal
on ‘Life is Hard’.

Janvier Havugimana Percussion, Harmony Vocals, Guitar, Lead Vocal on “Young People Are the Future”.

Photos & video by Marilena Delli. Executive producer: Gilbert Uwitonze. Mixed by David Odlum. Mastered by John Golden. Layout by D.Norsen. All songs by Adrien Kazigira except for Track 5 (Janvier Havugimana) & Track 9 (Javan Mahoro). (Toy Gun Murder publishing [BMI]).

The Good Ones were recorded live without overdubs on Adrien’s hilltop farm.

We recorded The Good Ones’ third album at their leader Adrien’s hillside farm—the one that he and his children were born on, the place where he’d hid for months in the trees nearby to survive the genocide.
The members of The Good Ones manage without electricity and running water,
luxuries that have yet to reached their remote regions despite the nation’s advancement. And even if these utilities ever make it there physically, they might still remain out of the band members’ reach financially.
Looking down into Adrien’s wide and askew valley—one that is folded and hidden within other valleys beyond the paved roads—the lush and multihued forest is dizzying.
Starvation is not a gimmick. It is
a reality. And individuals facing such
challenges should not be denied a stage for discourse, tolerated only if they conform to superimposed Anglo standards of style, affect, and instrumentation.
Most artists in the West wane with age due to excess—drugs, ego, the objectification of others. But artists from less mechanized lands usually decline due to the opposite: lack. Of nutrition, healthcare, and adequate shelter.
Adrien’s is a voice not deliberately rasped through blunts and tequila shots, but life itself. As we parted, he handed me a sack of iron beans from his farm. Seeing the longing in his children’s eyes as they watched this transaction, my urge was to refuse. But it was clear that he was seeking nourishment other than food and that acceptance of this generosity was nonnegotiable.
We have played The Good Ones’ music for scads of expat Rwandans, and every response has been the same: “you can’t find music like this anymore.”

“Even if you hate me,
I will keep loving you.
When someone is really suffering,
only then do you realize
that no one deserves
such pain.
Despite it all,
I still love you, dear friend.”

“Yoo Yoo, I went down into the valley,
I saw a lady there who
was more gorgeous than any jewel.
But you are better.
Yoo Yoo, I chose you.
My Wife,
as beautiful as a sunset.”


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