Lakou Mizik plays at summer’s first outdoor concert |

Lakou Mizik plays at summer’s first outdoor concert

Courtesy article
The first summer concert features Lakou Mizik on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Oats Park's Centennial Stage.

Lakou Mizik plays at the summer’s first Outdoor in the Park concert on Saturday at Oats Park Centennial Stage.

The performance begins at 7:30 p.m.

Steeve Valcourt is the son of Haitian musical legend Boulo Valcourt a blues, jazz and roots musician who found fame in the eighties with the band Caribbean Sextet and has even played the White House. Steeve grew up partially in Haiti and partially on Long Island where he went to high school and college.

Jonas Attis was born in Jeremie on the southwest coast of Haiti. Known as “The City of Poets,” Jeremie has a history of spawning politically engaged artists. Raised in a musical household by a family that practiced vodou, Jonas was surrounded by the country’s deep traditions. Nadine Remy grew up in the Christian evangelical community. Her family, also originally from Jeremie, were vodou practitioners before her grandmother converted to Christianity when arriving in Port-au-Prince.

Nadine’s pure voice made her a star of the church choir and gave her the motivation to go seek out the professional guidance of the legendary Boulo Valcourt — Steeve’s father. Boulo, impressed with young Nadine’s talent, started giving her lessons and eventually invited her to sing back up for him.

Sanba Zao (Louis Lesly Marcelin) is a founder of the Sanba and back to the earth movements in Haiti and has been on the musical scene for nearly 30 years. He is a master drummer with an encyclopedic knowledge of traditional songs and rhythms.

Zao is a ferocious front man with the energy of artists half his age. Zao became involved with the Lakou Mizik project through mutual friends. Originally, he came to give guidance and suggest collaborators.

Peterson “Ti Piti” Joseph and James Carrier are the young rara maestros that serve as the engine of Lakou Mizik’s rhythm section. Rara is a traditional street music that has remained relevant and vibrant to this day.

Lamarre Junior is the Lakou Mizik bassist. He grew up playing in church and continues to lead church bands throughout Port-au-Prince. But for him there is no conflict between vodou and church music — his faith is something personal he is proud to be playing his country’s cultural music.

Belony Beniste arrived recently into Lakou Mizik after the sudden death of original accordion player Allen Juste.

Sponsored by the city of Fallon, the concert is free, so the Churchill Arts Council encourages music lovers to bring their own chairs, refreshments and dinner.

Food and non-alcoholic beverages will be sold by Patacon Food Truck, which features Colombian foods. The Fallon Elks Lodge will sell beer and wine.

After the concert, the Art Center’s galleries and bar will open.