Zana Messia – Balkan Soul

What happens when you take one of the leading names in jazz percussion, and mate it with the heart and soul of an artist who finds beauty amid war and strife? You get Zana Messia and The Balkan Soul Orchestra.

Messia, a native of the former Yugoslavia – in that mountainous region of Eastern Europe known as the Balkans – and now a resident of Los Angeles, has teamed up with Harvey Mason, a founding member of Fourplay who has also fronted his own band as well as sitting in session for numerous other artists. The result is Balkan Soul (2012), a fascinating, cross-genre set of mostly original music.

Mason executive produced this album and appears on most of the 10 tracks, playing drums, percussion, marimba and vibes. The rest of the orchestra is a variable mix of assorted instruments, with each song having a different combination.

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