Afrotysonia is an afro pop trio based in Helsinki, Finland. It’s music is a joyous and deliciously soulful mix of west african rhythms and nordic sounds. It’s current line-up is Sonja Korkman on vocals, Aino Ruotanen on kantele and back vocals and Macoumba Ndiaye on percussion and back vocals.
“Aino Kurki is able to find an astonishing array of sounds and nuances from her instrument, that reaches from the very dry and dark to the really ethereal and bright.” “The hand-played percussion instruments and different shakers form a natural and seamless union with the kantele, that sometimes sounds very much like the in West Africa central kora instrument.” “The singing is above and beyond all the way through, both in Sonja Korkmans solo and in the well arranged and well sang backing vocals.”
– Lauri Paloposki/ Riffi
The first steps of the band were taken by singer Sonja Korkman and kantele artist Aino Kurki, who started playing and writing songs together in 2013 after discovering they shared a love for kora music and West African rhythms. In 2015 they invited the percussionist Macoumba Ndiaye to join them, and at that moment, Afrotysonia was born. In 2017 Afrotysonia released it’s debut album Dance on the Roof, which received a lot of positive reviews and was played in radios all over the world. The album was chosen one of the best 42 albums of the year 2017 by Huvudstadsbladet.
“The nine songs on the Dance On The Roof-album have a nice groove suited for dancing.” “The whole combination is tasty and works.”
– Veli-Matti Henttonen/ Salon Seudun Sanomat
Since the start, Afrotysonia has performed regularly. The trio has f.ex. had shows at FestAfrica, Manse World Festival, Elephantasy, Etno-soi!, Waaw Africa festival, Telakka and many other rhythm music and world music events in Finland. In December 2017 Afrotysonia went on a one-month tour to Senegal where they played at the Métissons festival in St Louis, the french cultural center in Dakar, Just4You – the biggest club for live music in Dakar – and even played at the biggest concert hall in Senegal, Le Grand Théâtre National du Sénégal, among other venues. The trio also performed live on DTV at prime time and some of Afrotysonias performances were broadcasted live on SEN TV and a few other channels. During the tour Afrotysonia collaborated with Omar Pene & Super Diamono and got to meet several of Senegals most prominent artists, such as Youssou N’Dour, Mamy Kanoute, Sahad Sarr, Soda Mama Fall, Takeifa and many more.
In August 2018 there was a change in the line-up, when the brilliant kantele player Aino Kurki was replaced by the brilliant kantele player Aino Ruotanen.
In December 2018 Afrotysonia went on a two week tour to Senegal and performed at several venues in both Dakar and Saly. In the end of the summer Afrotysonia toured in the southern part of Finland and in December 2019 Afrotysonia will be back in Senegal.
Afrotysonia is also the name of small, white and violet flowers with soft spikes, whose roots dig deep into the African soil.