March 26, 2007

Life's little pleasures

Like I had written before, I had indulged in some wishful thinking about wanting to see/hear live some of the great names in West African music....

...well, earlier this week, en route to my dentist's office to pick up some x-rays, I noticed that Toumani Diabaté and his Symmetric Orchestra are going to be playing at the Somerville theater
here in the Boston area. I HAD to go to this event and at $28 a ticket, some would say it was a steal to see the world's finest (video) kora (a traditonal instrument in Malian music, essentially a 21-string harp-lute) player from Mali and his assembly of very talented musicians from Mali and other West African countries around Mali.

Much joy comes anticipating the concert... I'll blog again about the experience soon. In the meantime, go hear some of the songs and see a video from their recent album, Boulevard de l'Independence, which was apparently 'recorded in two weeks' worth of all-night sessions in Bamako'.
Also at the site is a preview of Toumani's collaboration with Ali Farka Toure, In the Heart of the Moon - which was recorded over "three unrehearsed, improvisatory two-hour sessions at the Hotel Mande, on the banks of the Niger river, in Bamako, Mali."

Also at the Somerville theater, on April 21st the great Mali singer, Salif Keita will be performing. I am very tempted to buy tickets again despite the fact that it is almost sold out and available tickets are in the very last few rows of the theater. For now, listen to Keita's haunting voice on this song, where he sings with Cesaria Evora, Cape Verde's finest and most popular female vocalist.

Incidentally, Cesaria Evora will also be performing in Boston at the Berklee Performance Center in June.

See previous posts on music from Africa - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

1 comment:

Sanjeev said...

It was absolutely amazing, Kim. I hope to blog about it soon.

Unfortunately, my penchant to catalogue information and find information in great detail through a variety of links has led me into a deep dive on music from Mali and West Africa, in general. What an amazing musical tradition they have!

I have blogged about Ali Farka Toure (who died last year) and his son Vieux also last year. Seems Vieux also played at JohnnyD's ( on March 1st. What an opportunity I missed!

I envy people who have had the opportunity to go to Bamako and hang out with these great musicians.

(Surprised to see a comment. Did not know ANYONE read my blog.)

Not one more refugee death, by Emmy Pérez

And just like that, my #NPM2018 celebrations end with  a poem  today by Emmy Pérez. Not one more refugee death by Emmy Pérez A r...