A Haitian-American who sings in French, Haitian Creole, and English, Leyla McCalla plays cello, tenor banjo, and guitar. Deeply influenced by traditional Creole, Cajun, and Haitian music, as well as by American jazz and folk, her music is at once earthy, elegant, soulful, and witty. Raised mostly in suburban New Jersey, Leyla experienced a renewed sense of connection with her Haitian heritage after moving to New Orleans, which led to her involvement as a member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops and deeply enriched her own music and sense of purpose. Her new album, A Day For The Hunter, A Day For The Prey (2016) is named after the Haitian proverb that also provided the title of Gage Averill’s 1997 book about popular music, power, and politics in Haiti. The album continues to explore the themes of social justice and pan-African consciousness that marked 2013’s Vari-Colored Songs. Leyla McCalla’s music vibrates with three centuries of history, yet also feels strikingly fresh, distinctive, and contemporary.