Kassav’ the zouk group par excellence, which invented zouk, has become a living legend. All the Caribbean musical influences intermingle with funk and rock to produce an unusual, rhythmic cocktail. Enough to make the entire planet dance.
Kassav’, a Francophone zouk band formed in Paris in 1979 recognized as the originators of the zouk genre, is a living legend in world music. The core members of the band are Jocelyne Béroard, Jacob Desvarieux, Jean-Philippe Marthély, Patrick St. Eloi, Jean-Claude Naimro, Claude Vamur and Georges Décimus (who left the band to form Volte Face, before returning to Kassav’).
Kassav’ have issued over 20 albums, with a further 12 solo albums by band members.
The story of Kassav’ (the name comes from cassava, which is a mixture of manioc paste and coconut) began in 1979 when Pierre-Edouard Décimus, a member of a dance orchestra since the sixties, decided to revamp and modernize the music he had always played along with Freddy Marshall, another musician from the Antilles. They adored popular carnival music, and so Decimus tried to adapt it to modern musical techniques. They also recruited Jacob Desvarieux, an established studio guitarist, and Georges Décimus, Pierre-Edouard’s brother, a bass guitarist, together with other studio musicians.
Kassav’ celebrated twenty years in the trade in 2009 with an impressive series of concerts. The group has filled concert venues around the world, notable among them is the Zénith in Paris four times before stoking up an audience of 65,000 at the Stade de France. The anniversary zouk night was immortalized on a CD and DVD (“Live au Stade de France”), accompanied by the release of a triple compilation album (“Saga”) covering Kassav’s career.
Kassav’ is a crowd favorite in the Caribbean and has impressed audiences on Saint Lucia with their diverse repertoire every time they perform on island.