‘Throw Down Your Heart’ is a feature documentary that follows Béla Fleck’s musical adventures through four African countries, Uganda, Tanzania, Gambia, and Mali, in search of the origins of his chosen instrument – the banjo -, which he sheepishly admits is associated with “a white Southern stereotype”.
Along the way, he collaborates with a wide array of musicians from local villagers who play a twelve-foot xylophone, to a family that makes and plays the akonting, to international superstars such as the Malian diva Oumou Sangare.
As Béla travels across Africa, he forges both musical and personal connections. Using
his banjo, he transcends barriers of language and culture, finding common ground with musicians from very different backgrounds and creating some of the most meaningful music of his career.
It’s a boundary-breaking musical adventure that celebrates the beauty and complexity of Africa – an Africa that is very different from what is often seen in the media today.
Watch the trailer online: