Les Nubians and Steph Johnson
Jazzy French afrobeat duo Les Nubians is on their Up Close and Personal tour, celebrating 20 years of being one of the few French-language musical groups to score hits in America, like the R&B-flavored “Makeda,” from their Grammy nominated 1998 album Princesses Nubiennes. The music made by sisters Celia and Helene Faussart, who grew up in the politically and musically fertile African country of Chad, is informed by their heritage, as the daughters of a black nurse from Cameroon, Africa, and a white Jewish father from northern France. Their appearance at the Belly Up on September 19 is being billed as “an intimate musical and visual experience featuring live visuals and storytelling,” including new tracks from an upcoming 20th anniversary EP said to include lyrics sung in both French and English, with sessions so far taking place in Detroit, Paris, New York City, and Cameroon. Local folk-rockers the Steph Johnson Band will open.