Jazz Gallery
Soul / Gospel & World gallery
Essential Listening
Gig Guide / News
Opinion / Music Talk
The Hi Fi Experience
Related services
Related Sites & Info
Staff Profiles
Guest Feedback
Contact M V Studio
Back to Home Page




Tcheka & Modeste

Tcheka & Modeste
@ the Purcell Room
18 November 2006

Photographs in order of performance.
Click an image to enlarge.

Tcheka biography

Manuel Lopes Andrade, aka Tcheka, was born on 20 July 1973 in the Port of Ribeira Barca, Santa Catarina, district of Santiago, Cape Verde archipelago. Tcheka’s introduction to the stage came from performing alongside his father, Nho Raul Andrade, a popular violinist at local functions. As his father was a disciplined performer, Tcheka learned quickly and the young disciple would soon develop his own style based on one of the islands most popular beats ‘Batuque’ (originally played by women).

One of his earliest compositions, “Man’ba des bes kumida dâ” clearly highlights Tcheka’s potential, and desire to reach a wider audience.

Tcheka would eventually move to Praia, where he worked as a cameraman for national television. This change of location and initial choice of career involved travel, therefore broadening the young man’s horizons. During his travels, Tcheka met journalist Julio Rodrigues. The pair clicked immediately and went on to write several songs, which they performed in the bars of the Cape Verdean capital. The newly formed duo where joined by other musicians, Perry (percussion) Kizo (bass) Robert Pemberton (flute) and more recently Raul (percussion).

Tcheka continues to gain new ground in his quest to bring the batuque beat to a wider audience. His concert at the Purcell Room was lively and extremely well received by all.

Modeste biography

Modeste Hugues Randramahitasoa grew up in Betroka, Southern Madagascar. Though his mother sings, and his uncle played the accordion, it was the sound of his neighbour’s guitar that caught his imagination. He explains;

“I didn’t start to play until I was about 15 years old. A neighbour played the guitar and I loved the sounds so much that I borrowed his and taught myself.”

After Modeste’s neighbour relocated, Modeste was forced to make his own guitar in his father’s workshop in the local technical college. Fishing line was used for strings. This would mean the guitar had to be held very close to hear the sound. Though Modeste admits the guitar was probably out of tune, it would be good enough for him to practise on.

Modeste’s interest in other musical sounds led him to experiment with other musical instruments, specifically those of the mervan, the traditional Malagasy instrument, with its box shape and 24 strings, which is played like the West African Kora. Modeste also listened to the natural sounds around him, such as birdcalls and whistling of the shepherds in the hills. He would then attempt to imitate these sounds on his homemade guitar.

Modeste was encouraged by his father to continue academic studies, so he studied engineering, and at 26 Modeste left for Bulgaria where he was awarded a U.N.E.S.C.O scholarship to do a post-graduate in electronic engineering.

Modeste worked hard at his studies, but always found time for his music, and would continue performing at student celebrations. He met his love, married and moved to Greece where he worked as an engineer. By the time the couple moved to London in 1996, Modeste had decided to pursue a career in music.

Modeste currently performs at festivals and clubs in England, France and Madagascar.

“… I play every day myself for at least 15 minutes. Any time life gets difficult and I feel angry or frustrated or London becomes a bit too hectic, I just take up my guitar and play. It keeps me cool.”

Tcheka – vocals & guitar
Modeste – vocals & guitar
Les Mommsen – guitar
Adriano Pinto - percussion
Adriano Adewale- percussion

Robin Francis
© Michael Valentine Studio


Tcheka & Modeste





Adriano Adewale

Tcheka band

Tcheka band


Modeste ,Tcheka & patrons



Tcheka - Nu Monda Modeste - Fomba / Living your destiny



Click Adriano Adewale's image to view photographs...

Adriano Adewale (Click to go to his page)

Go back to the London Jazz Festival 2006 home page.

Go back to the soul gallery.

[ Top ]