Ata Kak

Ata Kak


North America

Upcoming Shows

09/24/2022Arts Court, Ottawa, ON
09/25/2022Geary Art Crawl, Toronto, ON
09/27/2022Empty Bottle, Chicago, IL
09/29/2022POP Montreal, Montreal, QC
09/30/2022Elsewhere Hall, Brooklyn, NY
10/01/2022The Drake, Amherst, MA
10/02/2022Sonia, Boston, MA
10/04/2022Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia, PA
10/05/2022The Earl, Atlanta, GA
10/07/2022Don Quixote, Los Angeles, CA
10/09/2022The Chapel, San Francisco, CA
10/12/2022Polaris Hall, Portland, OR
10/12/2022Neurolux, Boise, ID
10/14/2022Madame Lou’s, Seattle, WA
10/15/2022Hollywood Theatre, Vancouver, BC

Ata Kak

Ata Kak is the mysterious Ghanaian electronic/rap/highlife icon who kick-started the whole Awesome Tapes From Africa phenomenon. After a long wait he has now started to play his first ever live performances in Europe.

Ata Kak’s Obaa Sima cassette fell on deaf ears when it was first self-released in Ghana in 1994 but when American musicologist Brian Shimkovitz stumbled upon the tape at a street stall in Cape Coast, Ghana eight years later it became the stimulus for him to launch his Awesome Tapes from Africa blog, writing in his inaugural post: ‘This is it. The song is called Moma Yendodo. You may never hear anything like this elsewhere. No one I know in Ghana listens to this frenetic leftfield rap madness.‘ 

The music on the recording – an amalgam of highlife, Twi-language rap, funk, hip-hop and electronica – traverses a pop music landscape that encapsulates international modes while reflecting contemporary Ghanaian music of the period. Presented with the sweaty passion of a Prince record and the lo-fi recording charm of early Chicago house music, Obaa Sima’s joyous soul and casual brilliance made the enigmatic Ata Kak an underground internet sensation and a party-starter the world over. After more than a decade of searching Brian finally tracked down the singer and released the LP officially in March 2015.

Press links

Pitchfork Documentary
FACT Mag – interview
Vice – article 
The Quietus – article