Chicago's Ethnic Heritage Ensemble has a mission in keeping with its name: to fuse aspects of traditional African music with African-American music. It all began in 1972 when percussionist extraordinaire Kahil El'Zabar traveled to Africa to study at the University of Ghana. Since then El'Zabar has lent his knowledge of musical roots to many projects, including work on the Broadway show, "The Lion King," and recording and touring with Stevie Wonder. When the EHE plays at Lovin' Cup, El'Zabar will be joined by saxophonist Alex Harding, who has played with Julius Hemphill and Hamiet Bluiett, and Corey Wilkes who can harmonize with himself when he lifts two trumpets to his lips.
The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble plays Sunday, February 19, at Lovin' Cup, 300 Park Point Drive. 7:30 p.m. $25 ($20 in advance). 271-3354; lovincup.com.