Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Toumani Diabaté - The Mandé Variations

Toumani Diabaté is a master of the kora, a 21-string West African Harp from the Mandingue country (Mali). His new album his is first solo project in 20 years and it's a pure masterpiece. Sometimes you just can't believe there is one man playing : between his hands the kora plays bass line, rhythmic, melody and chorus at the same time. Really amazing.
Toumani Diabaté - Kaounding Cissoko (buy)
And the music is beautiful, blending African tradition and other styles from America, Europe and even India. A little hard to get into if you're not used to African traditional music, but it's really worth the effort. All you have to do is sit or lay still and listen.

Check out Toumani's bio on the World Circuit site (his record company)

And a good BBC review of the album

Bonus : In this video, Toumani himself talks about the kora and his album

Site : http://www.toumani-diabate.com/

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