Seychelles islander Grace Barbé is the real deal, a genuinely exotic world music star for the 21st century, with the talent,looks and voice to match. Grace’s soulful music reflects and celebrates the diverse cultural influences of her Indian Ocean heritage
Grace Barbe hails from the sunburnt Indian Ocean islands of the Seychelles, where a colourful history of slavery, pirates, coups d'etat and coconuts have produced a unique Kreol rhythm, language and culture. Drawing from the diverse cultural melange of the islands, Grace's trio fuses the tropical rhythms and dances of the slaves with psychedelic rock, afrobeat, reggae and pop. Conjuring a bewilderingly huge sound, the musical ESP between bassist Grace and younger sister Joelle Barbe (drums) must be seen to be believed. Guitarist Jamie Searle adds a dense layer of Afro - guitar sorcery.
Grace has been enticing audiences to get up and shake their coconuts since the release of her debut album Kreol Daughter in 2009, with appearances all over India, East Africa (Sauti za Busara Festival, Zanzibar) and the Indian Ocean (Sakifo Festival, La Reunion) as well as at Australia's leading music festivals, including Womadelaide, WOMAD New Zealand, Byron Bay Bluesfest and Woodford Folk Festival. Her band has won the award for "Best World Act" seven times in her current home state of Western Australia. Passionately committed to showcasing and developing the Kreol culture with which she is so deeply connected, Grace is touring her new album Welele!
See what all the fuss is about at one of her shows!
James Searle was born in Salisbury, UK and took his music degree in Bath, studying classical guitar with Tom Kerstens.
Following travel and teaching work in East Africa, James developed a strong interest in African music.
James has co-composed and produced two highly acclaimed albums with Grace Barbe “Kreol Daughter" (2008) and “Welele!” (2013), and acts as the musical director of her band.
James is a busy musician and guitar teacher in Perth, Western Australia, and has worked with and led many bands as both bass player and guitarist.
Joelle Barbé is an artist and musician based in Perth, Western Australia. Born in the Seychelles, Joelle moved to Australia at a very young age. Coming from a family of female artists, she took up the drums and started performing at Seychellois community events at age 11. Joelle is now acclaimed as one of the most exciting young drummers in Australia.
Co-founder of the band Zarm, she has more than 13 years of performing and creative experience; researching and utilizing traditional and emerging technologies whilst addressing the need to effectively articulate the performative research paradigm within a Creative Arts practice.