Mohamed Camara

Guinean-Australian Musician

Performer, songwriter and Guinean music educator, Mohamed Camara’s rich Manding heritage has shaped a life-long passion and creative practice. As a child he was apprenticed to internationally renowned Guinean master drummer Ton Ton Sylla, where he studied djembe, dun duns, and song. He also taught students traveling from Europe, America and Australia. Mohamed went on to perform in many of Guinea’s leading drum and dance ensembles, including Ballet Bolonta, Les Sorciers de Guinée (directed by Miriam Makeba's percussionist Papa Kouyaté), and was a founding member and djembe leader of Ballet Destin. Mohamed has played djembe for master dancer Alseny Soumah, and has studied and performed with Guinea's great master drummer Fadouba Oularé.

Based in Melbourne since 2007, Mohamed shares his Manding heritage with Australian audiences to inspire cultural awareness and exchange. Mohamed seeks musical innovation through unique collaborations with western musicians and styles, taking creative risks inspired by respectful musical exchange. These have resulted in collaborations including a Speak Percussion commission with jazz drummer James McLean, and with electronic producer Jonny Faith creating “Fana”, released by Heard and Felt Music. Mohamed was co-writer on a track for Australian film soundtrack ‘Le Champion’, produced by Cezary Skubiszewski. Performance highlights include Melbourne Recital Centre, Moomba Festival, Viva Victoria, Strawberry Fields, White Night Melbourne, Darwin Festival, Dark Mofo and Woodford Folk Festival. Mohamed has toured nationally with Asanti Dance Theatre and Muhanamwe, sponsored by Regional Arts Victoria and the Australia Council’s Playing Australia. In 2016 Mohamed founded contemporary Guinean band Jarabi, fronting the band on the kora, vocals and djembe, and he recently joined African Cuban fusion band Ausecuma Beats represented by Music in Exile.