Charly Yapo - Zion Experience

World Music

An album with Radical Sound accents!

It is a very particular album that Ivory Coast bass player and composer, Charly Yapo is presenting, a rarely seen formula where the bass player composes the
music and invites other artists to put words on his creations. Charly’s very first album, Zion Experience, is all-out Radical Sound, a warm and textured music that unites to the voices of invited singers Dasha Maily Beaubien, Drê-D, Daddy Rushy, Papa-T and Tapa. Zion Experience is the accomplishment of a long musical journey that began back in the years of the Abidjan Conservatory and made its way through African, European and eventually North American soil. To his music, largely influenced by this journey, Charly Yapo is adding his Radical Sound accents. This sound, anchored in African reggae, enriches the musical texture as it enables the musician to explore different styles within a same tune. As the guitar improvises “rocker” style, the saxophone flirts with salsa and the bass guitar slides towards afro-pop. For Charly Yapo, the Radical Sound presented in this first Opus is “ entirely in the Tangara feeling. In other words, reggae served up in an afro, pop, funk, salsa, rock, jazz sauce… a ‘dirty’ reggae! ” (Top Visage, 2012). This ‘Dirty’ reggae, because largely influenced by jazz, soul and even pop music, but conserving the rhythmic authenticity specific to African reggae, enables finding a way around the rules of creation. Charly Yapo’s rhythmic sense and intelligence gives the album Zion Experience a very particular flavor because he uses different voices with the same willingness of
mixing different styles and this, within the same song. Thus, invited singers, all from different horizons and styles, come together harmoniously. From Creole to
Malinke, including French and English, the performers will carry you into a wide range of emotions from the beginning to the end. As we listen to the songs of this album, we realize that Charly Yapo’s music is the result of a long apprenticeship spent refining his creations. After many years in the making, he is finally ready to share his personal achievements.

Searching for Zion...
“For me, reaching paradise can only be done through music”
– Charly Yapo

Zion means paradise in Creole and in Rastafarian culture it also describes the harmonious spiritual sphere of Paradise. For Charly Yapo, reaching paradise can only be done through music and with Zion experience in the background, only one wish comes to mind : accompany him on his road to Zion.


  • Ref: AFR2-2119
  • Style: World Music
  • Year: 2012

Track listing:

  • 1. Long long road
  • 2. La Zik
  • 3. Good man
  • 4. King of kings
  • 5. Je m'ennuie de toi
  • 6. Rasta man
  • 7. La vie est laide
  • 8. When I saw you
  • 9. One life to live
  • 10. Bonheur d'un jour
  • 11. Working man
  • 12. When I saw you

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