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Biography

Born in the tiny nation of Togo, Amen rose quickly to the heights of the West African music scene before blazing his way across the Mediterranean to establish himself in France. His virtuosic guitar playing, which has unmistakable echoes of Hendrix, quickly established his reputation amongst touring international acts and saw him invited to play alongside artists such as Keziah Jones, the Black-Eyed Peas, Vieux Farka Touré, and Indila.

 

As a guitarist, he is renowned for his uncanny ability to adapt himself to all musical genres – accompanying jazz singers such as China Moses and Lisa Simone, Rappers and Slam poets Akua Naru and La Fouine, Carribean artists including BelO and Calypso Rose, and ‘World’ musicians such as Angelique Kidjo, Aziz Samahoui and Cheick Tidiane Seck. He has played at Festivals all over the world, from Montreal Jazz Festival in Canada to Rock on Rio in Brazil to the Taragalte Festival in the middle of the Sahara Desert.

In addition to the hundreds of albums on which he has collaborated with other artists, Amen has composed and recorded five albums of his own:  Gamessou with the trio Maleeka (2007), Togo to Go with the group Zoka Fonktion (2010), Funkabelik with KBLek (2012), Pearls and Gold (2012), and Electric Togoland (2014).This last album, which brings together musicians from Africa and Europe and, through a process of musical alchemy, transforms traditional Togolese melodies into an electrifying rock-infused sound-track, has been compared to Ry Cooder’s Buena Vista Social Club. A documentary about the experience of recording the album is in the pipeline.

Due out in 2018 is The Afrocanalyst, Amen's stunning solo incursion into the Afro-Rock arena, co-produced by Kwamé Yeboah and featuring compelling original compositions, stunning guitar riffs as well as special guest artists Keziah Jones and Akua Naru.