Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Kahil El’Zabar’s Ethnic Heritage Ensemble “Celebrating 50 years of Great Black Music”

Monday, February 5 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

$18 – $25
The .9Mile Collaborative is thrilled to celebrate both the 50th anniversary of legendary Chicago percussionist Kahil El’Zabar’s Ethnic Heritage Ensemble as well as Hallwalls’ own 50th anniversary on February 5th in the 9th Ward. Please join us for this one-of-a-kind concert experience and celebrate 50 years of art & music!
Monday, February 5 at 8:00 pm
$25 general admission, $18 students/seniors, $20 members
Ethnic Heritage Ensemble:
Kahil El’Zabar – drums, percussion
Corey Wilkes – trumpet
Alex Harding – baritone saxophone
A leading proponent of the AACM’s “ancient to the future” philosophy, multi-instrumentalist Kahil El’Zabar has led various incarnations of the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble since 1973, one year after returning from his studies at the University of Ghana. His goal was to combine concepts of African American music-making with the roots of traditional African music to produce something that carried the music into the 21st century and beyond. Half a century later, this legendary band is still serving people worldwide with their special brand of 21st century Griot music. He’s recorded with Nina Simone, Pharaoh Sanders, Archie Shepp, and many more.
The EHE was founded by El’Zabar in 1974 originally as a quintet, but was soon paired down to its classic form — a trio, featuring El’Zabar on multi-percussion and voice, plus two horns. It was an unusual format, even by the standards of the outward-bound musicians of the AACM: “Some people literally laughed at our unorthodox instrumentation and approach. We were considered even stranger than most AACM bands at the time. I knew in my heart though that this band had legs, and that my concept was based on logic as it pertains to the history of Great Black Music, i.e. a strong rhythmic foundation, innovative harmonics and counterpoint, well-balanced interplay and cacophony amongst the players, strong individual soloist, highly developed and studied ensemble dynamics, an in-depth grasp of music history, originality, fearlessness, and deep spirituality.” With El’Zabar at the center, the band’s line-up has always been open to changes, and over the years the EHE has welcomed dozens of revered musicians including Light Henry Huff, Kalaparusha Maurice Macintyre, Joseph Bowie, Hamiett Bluiett, and Craig Harris. The current line-up has been consolidated over two decades — trumpeter Corey Wilkes entered the circle twenty years ago, while baritone sax player Alex Harding joined seven years ago, after having played with El’Zabar since the early 2000s.


Monday, February 5
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
$18 – $25


.9 Mile Collaborative
View Organizer Website


Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center
341 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14202 United States
+ Google Map
View Venue Website

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *