It was announced this week that Welsh harpist Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita have won the Best Cross-Cultural Collaboration Award in the prestigious Songlines Magazine Music Awards 2014 for their debut Album Clychau Dibon.
More than 8,000 Songlines readers from 65 different countries voted for the awards shortlist, with the editorial board deciding the final winners in just four categories. The magazine celebrates its 100th edition with the issue announcing the awards, which are now in their 6th year. This is the first time a Welsh project has received a Songlines Award.
The other winners include Tamikrest (Best Group), Family Atlantica (Best Newcomer) and Bassekou Kouyate (Best Artist). Full details of the awards can be found on Songlines website: www.songlinesmusicawards.com.
"As soon as I heard the record I knew this was something special. There is a filigree delicacy. There's something deeply gratifying about this whole collaboration- the pairing of the West African kora with the Welsh harp," Simon Broughton, Editor in Chief of Songlines Magazines said. “The first impression is what an unlikely combination of two completely different cultures this is. But when you hear the inextricably cascading notes, you realise that there are fascinating similarities that connect these two instruments. Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita have blended the harp and kora of Wales and Senegal in the most seductive way. I wager there will be many more plaudits to come.”
The Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita collaboration has picked up several accolades recently – winning fRoots Critics Poll Album of the Year 2013, two BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards nominations (Best Duo and Best Traditional Track), and Songlines Magazine Top Ten Albums of 2013.
The duo commence a 12 date UK tour on 2nd May, ahead of summer appearances at WOMAD 2014; the 50th Cambridge Folk Festival; Shambala; Festival-interceltique, Lorient and Luminato Festival in Toronto. Further details can be found on their new website: www.catrinfinchandseckoukeita.com
The Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita Project is co-produced by Theatr Mwldan, Cardigan and Astar Artes, and is supported by the Welsh Government and the Arts Council of Wales, and Arts Council England.