A Platform for Ethnically and Culturally Inspired Music
About: studio performance
About: ngoma band live
Rafael was born in 1984 in Maputo, Mozambique, at a time when brother fought against brother in a civil war. One can still see the effects of the civil war from the worn-torn buildings and unrepaired streets. Maputo is a densely populated city. Yet, when you look toward the country's east coast, there are miles and miles of breathtaking coastline along the Indian Ocean. The people of Mozambique are known worldwide for their positive disposition and outlook. They tend to take one day at a time, hoping that each day will be better than the day before. Rafael was born into a family of artists in the Chope and Nhungwe Tribe. Like his ancestors, Rafael is dedicating his career to the preservation of tradition and culture of his tribe through music and art. As a youngster, instilled by the exposure from family and friends, Rafael developed a passion for music and dance. He was particularly drawn to African hand-drums and the timbila, an instrument comparable to what is known as a xylophone. Still true today, the Chope Tribe is best known for building the timbila. Through a skillful and tedious process, the timbila is handmade from muenge wood and massala (dry gourds). In his elementary school years, Rafael was further inspired by his teachers to develop his music and dance.