Combining rhythms, melodies and lyrics from Yoruba and Igbo tribes Yankari have a sound reminiscent of the Afrobeat greats of the 60’s and 70’s. Fuji, highlife and funk have been chewed up by the band to create a 21st century heavy groove. This new sound has world-wide appeal and the Yankari fan base stretches from Ireland to Japan, Brazil to Spain, Nigeria to US.
The band was formed by Gabriel Akujobi and brothers Segun and Michael Akano. A trio of multi-instrumentalist who cut their teeth as kids playing in church in Lagos.
The brothers used to fight over who got to play the drums, this was before the either had a kit but instead used branches from a nearby tree to play rhythms that they had heard around the neighbourhood. 20 years later they would be known as the Akano Rhythm Brothers. In their late teens and early 20s they made a mint by travelling to parties all around London where they would start playing on Friday night and finish on Sunday afternoon, they’d play drums, keys, bass, guitars and sing. Later they made a living playing together at gigs and festivals all over Ireland and the UK.
They share over fifteen years of stage performance experience. Performing with several bands, theatrical groups, including Arambe Theater Production, The Dublin Afrobeat Ensemble, Rhythm Africana, Oleku, Simi Crowns, Akeeb Kareem and other collaborations. They drew from their cultural and ancestral rhythms, infused with other world music elements and instruments, to give off a vibrant sound with a distinctive message. The trio call on a pool of like minded dublin-based musicians from all over the world to bring the music alive at gigs and festivals.
Yankari aspires to advance the original Afrobeat genre by incorporating contemporary western sounds such as, electro-jazz/funk, rhythmic-dance and african rock-and-roll sounds whilst keeping the traditional groove elements of afrobeat music at core of the music.
The 10-piece band has closed Knockanstockan 2018 (Faerie Field Stage), performed at the inaugural All Together Now Festival, got people grooving over two days at the Laya City Spectacular festival, headlined Bluefire Street Fest, supported acts such as, the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble at the SugarClub, performed at the Dublin Africa Day Festival, The Global Grooves Festival in Drogheda and at many more.
Signed to the same label as Fehdah and Zaska, Yankari just released their debut single “Enyimba” on Hipdrop Records.