Yesterday, I took a quick look at the World Europe Music Chart to search for some new music. I stopped at No.1 –Toumani & Sidiki. I knew the name Toumani but I was not familiar with the second name.I couldn’t quite place the name Toumani but a quick Google search revealed that Toumani is a Mali kora player. With that information, I remembered that my introduction to the music of Toumani was in reference to the Derek Gripper album One Night on Earth:Music from the Strings of Mali that I first listened to last November. Here is that review. I quickly went to Spotify where I found the album and gave it a listen. The album is terrific, amazing and beautiful music from those Malian strings!! When I went to Toumani’s website, I discovered that Sidiki is Toumani’s son!! For those unfamiliar with these guys, here’s some information from the biographies at the website. First about Toumani….
Toumani Diabaté is one of the most creatively prolific and successful musicians on the African continent, and was described by the Observer as ‘one of the world’s most pre-eminent musicians in any genre’. He plays the kora, a harp with 21 strings unique to West Africa. More than any other kora player, it’s Toumani who is responsible for bringing this instrument to audiences around the world. He’s a performer of truly exceptional virtuosity and creativity – someone who has shown that the kora can rival the world’s greatest instruments.
followed by Sidiki…..
Born in Bamako, Mali in 1990, Sidiki Diabate is a kora-player and hip hop producer and the latest addition to the celebrated Diabate musical dynasty. He is the eldest son of the world’s greatest kora player Toumani Diabaté, and the grandson of Sidiki Diabaté senior (1922-96) who was considered the greatest player of his generation. Like his father, and his grandfather before him Sidiki is a griot – a custodian of the ancient oral traditions of West Africa’s Mandé people, which stretches back, father-to-son for over seven hundred years.
You can read the complete biographies for both of these great musicians – here This morning while I was doing some surfing around the Internet, I put the album on again and again I was entranced by the music. So I certainly recommend that you check them out!! I also understand why the album is No 1!! Here’s some other press about the album…..’ “Every note in this rich tapestry of strings is exquisitely calibrated in the pursuit of perfection.” Songlines ***** “a rare treat, one of the CDs of the year.” Evening Standard “gently exquisite” The Guardian “this album ranks among Toumani’s best work” The Times “touched by a profound sense of melody and sheer loveliness” UNCUT (9/10) You can get a little taste of the music in this video and also learn a little more about Toumani and Sidiki….