NPR Music’s Tiny Desk meets globalFEST series to return January 18-20. : NPR

Barbara Merkley

Music Festival globalFest reunites with Tiny Desk and announces the 2022 lineup.


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Music Festival globalFest reunites with Tiny Desk and announces the 2022 lineup.


Tiny Desk meets globalFEST 2022 performers include Al Bilali Soudan, Bedouin Burger, Nora Brown, Kiran Ahluwalia, Kombilesa Mi, Northern Cree, Son Rompe Pera & More

November 9, 2021 – Washington, D.C. – New York’s globalFEST announces the return of its flagship event and the second edition of NPR Music’s Tiny Desk meets globalFEST taking place Tuesday, January 18th through Thursday, January 20th via the NPR Music YouTube channel. The series will present exclusive video performances from the globalFEST’s live artist plus alumni.

The renowned music festival returns to two stages at the newly renovated Webster Hall (125 E 11th St, New York, NY ) on Sunday, January 16th, 2022. As always, the festival will feature artists from around the world and around the corner, from Mexico’s Son Rompe Pera to Lebanon and Syria via France’s Bedouin Burger to New York’s Kiran Ahluwalia.

globalFEST is a festival like no other: for almost two decades, it has showcased musicians from over 100 countries to sold-out audiences each year. A true celebration, the festival has been crucial to the trajectory of many notable artists, including Antibalas, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Amythyst Kiah, AngeliqueKidjo, Emel Mathlouthi, Martha Redbone and more. The year’s lineup is curated by festival co-founders and directors Bill Bragin, Isabel Soffer and Shanta Thake plus guest curator Gabrielle Davenport.

“globalFEST came of age at Webster Hall, so it’s a thrill to be back after several years of renovations and the pandemic. To that end, last year, our longtime friends at NPR Music saved the day with the inaugural Tiny Desk meets globalFEST series, introducing the festival to hundreds of thousands of new fans,” said the curators. “Now, as live concerts return, we want to keep both the incredible momentum of Tiny Desk and re-embrace the ecstatic in-person community that we have missed. So we will! All in the service of our catalytic mission to move international and roots music to the center of the performing arts.”

The Tiny Desk meets globalFEST series was born out of the challenges of the pandemic and hardening international borders in 2021, building on a long relationship between globalFEST and NPR Music.

“For the past dozen years, the globalFEST team has meant so much to me, curating memorable nights of brilliant discoveries from around the world. Last year, we teamed up to bring those magical moments to people’s homes all over our planet. I think this tradition will have a long life and a meaningful one to artists and audiences,” Bob Boilen said.

Since the launch of NPR Music’s Tiny Desk concert series in 2008, more than 900 performances have been recorded at the Tiny Desk — Boilen’s festive workspace at NPR headquarters. At the heart of these beloved concerts, now seen by 16 million viewers per month, is a passion for music discovery, making an unparalleled stage for artists of every kind.

globalFEST 2022 Live Lineup:

Kiran Ahluwalia*

(India, Canada, USA) leads a band of electric guitar, accordion, organ, tabla and drums, combining open-hearted Indian ghazals, Sufi songs and African grooves.

Al Bilali Soudan*

(Mali) is a family band from Timbuktu playing traditional and contemporary Tuareg music. This is their U.S. debut.

Nora Brown

(USA) is a banjo virtuoso specializing in music from southeast Appalachia. She also sings traditional unaccompanied ballads from the region and beyond. Brown performed in the 2021 Tiny Desk meets globalFEST video series.

Bedouin Burger*

(France, Lebanon, Syria) is iconic Lebanese producer Zeid Hamdan and celestially voiced Syrian singer Lynn Adib merging electronic music with traditional Arabic music (maqam), religious songs of ancient Syria, and jazz. This is their US debut.

Kombilesa Mí*

(Colombia) is a hip-hop collective forging a new generation of Afro-Colombian traditions from San Basilio de Palenque – a combination of rap, folklore and Palenquero.

Northern Cree*

(Canada) is a powwow and Round Dance drum and singing group from Maskwacis, Alberta. Founded by the Wood brothers of Saddle Lake Cree Nation, most members also come from the Treaty 6 and are part of Cree Nation.

Son Rompe Pera*

(Mexico) is a band of brothers rethinking folkloric music, playing their own unique blend of garage, marimba, cumbia and punk rock.

*Included in the 2022 Tiny Desk meets globalFEST series

Additional 2022 Tiny Desk meets globalFEST performances by:

Ak Dan Gwang Chil (ADG7)

(South Korea) is a wildly imaginative pop trio of powerhouse female singers inspired by the sacred shaman ritual music and folk songs of old-world Korea.

Suistamon Sähkö

(Finland) plays a high energy, explosive mix of bold hip-hop and ethno-techno music, utilizing Soviet-made accordion, synth buzz and smoke shack sounds.

Tufan Derince Group

(Kurdistan, Netherlands) weaves jazz, hard rock, hip hop, and EDM with the raw and heavy sound of contemporary electrified Kurdish folk and wedding music.

**globalFEST 2020 alumni

The lineups of both components are subject to change.

The festival will be accompanied by Wavelengths, the premier global music conference in the United States, on January 27, 2022. The conference serves as a space for critical dialogue between artists and artist professionals to keep the industry moving forward. Wavelengths serves as the host of the globalFEST Awards, which rewards the artists and arts leaders making a major impact on the growth and spread of truly diverse cultural programming in the United States. Tickets for this virtual event are available here.

Find full bios and photos of individual artists here

About globalfest:

globalFEST is one of the world’s most dynamic global music platforms, growing from an acclaimed festival/showcase into a catalytic non-profit service organization for curators, artists, and the performing arts field. The programs have evolved to include the curation of notable stages and festivals, the creation and distribution of urgent grants, the reinvigoration of the North American Presenters groups, a partnership with NPR Music’s All Songs Considered and its Tiny Desk series, and Wavelengths, an industry-focused music conference. Through its work, the not-for-profit 501(3)C globalFEST (gF) encourages networking and cultural diplomacy; deepens cultural understanding among its constituents; builds audiences for international music and creates new opportunities for artists leading to a more robust and sustainable ecosystem for world music in the United States. For more information, including lineup, event news, and updates, please visit and follow globalFEST on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

About NPR Music:

For more than a decade, NPR Music’s robust music journalism and award-winning original video programming has delighted millions of music fans from all genres. NPR Music collaborates with NPR’s news magazines, public radio Member stations and the passionate listener community to celebrate exceptional music and discover emerging artists.

Visit to find the complete Tiny Desk concert series, music feature stories, podcasts, extensive archives of performances, interviews and music reviews. Connect with NPR Music on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Press Contact:

Yuri Kwon Pitch Perfect PR

[email protected], 773-654-1477

Yanius Alvarado Matos NPR, Media Relations

[email protected]

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