Call for Feature Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

Music
cover art

Mamani Keita

Gagner L'Argent Français

(No Format; US: 25 Jun 2011; UK: 27 Jun 2011)

A Malian singer worked over by a French producer—this album should be a glossy mass of sheen and slush, but no, nay, absolutely not, the Malian singer stays steady and firm at the centre while the Frenchman roams baroque around her, fascinated by her ringing treelike isolation—“Sometimes I feel I’m listening to a little girl singing,” he told her once as they were being interviewed, “but at other times it’s like this really wise old woman”—he gives her flute, he hands her reggae, violins, kora, a clarinet, a subdued series of sighs, and then something that sounds like—an erhu? And a noise like a banjo in a haunted house for “Doussou”. Here, he says: endless gifts. Have a guitar. She continues undaunted, she has seen rock guitars before, she used to be one of Salif Keita’s backup singers. Mali is always there, not only in her voice, but also in the kora, and other instruments, in the roll and pace of the songs, and in a guest vocal from Adama Coulibaly, who comes in on “Konia”. The Frenchman’s name is Nicolas Repac.

Rating:

Tagged as: bambara | france | mali
Media
Related Articles
25 Feb 2014
Kanou is a pop-rock album and it's also an impatient album. It never uses four seconds to get a motif across if it can do it in three.
By David Maine and Deanne Sole
1 Dec 2011
The best of this year's world music proves there's energy surging everywhere around music, this human-made fight to find an approximation of the inexpressible.
Comments
Now on PopMatters
PM Picks
Announcements

© 1999-2014 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters.com™ and PopMatters™ are trademarks
of PopMatters Media, Inc.

PopMatters is wholly independently owned and operated.