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Toumani Diabate

Toumani Diabate is acknowledged to be the foremost kora player in the world. The kora is a 21-string harp-lute instrument that has been played in Africa for centuries. It was the signature of the medieval Mandingo Empire, which populated West Africa from the 13th to the 16th centuries. Diabate has brought the kora to pop music, African orchestras, flamenco, jazz, and the blues. But his latest album, “The Mande Variations,” features the instrument solo. Toumani Diabate comes from a long line of kora-playing griots

The Ripple Effect

Label: Craft Recordings
Released: 2020
Track listing: Bamako; Nashville; Snug Harbor; Elyne Road; Matitu/Buribalal; Manchester; Throw Down Your Heart; Kauonding Sissoko; Katmandu; Dueling Banjos.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Bela Fleck and Toumani Diabate: The Ripple Effect

Read "The Ripple Effect" reviewed by Doug Collette

The Ripple Effect is the coup de grace of Bela Fleck's ten year-plus excursion into the African roots of his chosen instrument of the banjo, originally titled Throw Down Your Heart (Rounder, 2009). Part of a larger set comprised of both video and audio on DVD/CD, The Complete Africa Sessions (Craft Recordings, 2020), these ten concert ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Bruford-Borstlap: Sheer Reckless Abandon

Read "Sheer Reckless Abandon" reviewed by John Kelman

One of the great joys of music can be that of distance: coming back to a piece of music, a musician/group or a discography, even, years later to rediscover it anew. While returning to music after a break of months, years...even decades...is not always a revelation, it's likely true that, if the music was appealing the ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Ballaké Sissoko at Sheung Wan Civic Centre Theatre

Read "Ballaké Sissoko at Sheung Wan Civic Centre Theatre" reviewed by Rob Garratt

Ballaké SissokoSheung Wan Civic Centre Theatre Le French May Arts FestivalHong Kong May 5, 2019 The kora must be one of the world's great improvisatory instruments, and Mali's Ballaké Sissoko is surely one of the instrument's most visible proponents. Somewhere between a harp and a double lute, the ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Destination Africa! Part I: Mali, Morocco & Tunisia

Read "Destination Africa! Part I: Mali, Morocco & Tunisia" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

In this episode we'll explore jazz by African musicians and by foreign musicians fascinated with the African continent and its music, with a special focus on Mali, Morocco and Tunisia. Happy Listening! Playlist Ben Allison “Mondo Jazz Theme (feat. Ted Nash & Pyeng Threadgill)" 0:00 Daniel Freedman “All Brothers" from Bamako ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Peo Alfonsi e Derek Gripper: chitarra classica, tra musica colta e popolare

Read "Peo Alfonsi e Derek Gripper: chitarra classica, tra musica colta e popolare" reviewed by Mario Calvitti

Tra la musica cosiddetta “colta" di origine accademica e quella di matrice popolare probabilmente non è mai esistita una linea di separazione netta come molti (soprattutto in ambito classico) vorrebbero far credere. Troppe sono le influenze reciproche esercitate nel corso dei secoli, anche nonostante le diversità dei vari contesti storico-culturali che si sono avvicendati nel tempo. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Mulatu Astatke: Sketches of Ethiopia

Read "Sketches of Ethiopia" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Vibraphonist/composer Mulatu Astatke is the creator of Ethio-jazz and reputedly the first African musician to study at Berklee. Prior to that he had studied music in Wales and London. Whilst in America in the 1960s and early 1970s Astatke absorbed diverse influences and a dense rhythmic mosaic is a key component of this pulsating recording. Afro-Latin, ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Salif Keita at Yoshi's San Francisco

Read "Salif Keita at Yoshi's San Francisco" reviewed by Harry S. Pariser

Salif KeitaYoshi'sSan Francisco, CA September 7, 2014 Any opportunity to see Salif Keita, the 65-year-old “Golden Voice of Africa" is a special occasion indeed. Keita, a 40-year-plus veteran of the music scene, is one of Africa's top musical stars, one who travels all over the world. He sings ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Live Duos From Birmingham: Tir Na Nóg, Melt-Banana & Toumani/Sidiki Diabaté

Read "Live Duos From Birmingham: Tir Na Nóg, Melt-Banana & Toumani/Sidiki Diabaté" reviewed by Martin Longley

Tir Na Nóg The Kitchen Garden Café May 26, 2014 The Irish duo Tir Na Nóg should be applauded for its longevity in addition to its ability to keep the music vital, exuding an aura of in-the-moment spontaneity. The wonderfully intimate Kitchen Garden Café, in the Birmingham suburb of ...


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