The recipe for kora music: Take a large calabash gourd, dry it, put a large stick through it, stretch an animal skin over it, and add 21 strings or so. Then spend a lifetime learning to play it. Or…listen to this show and hear the magical fingers of some of the best kora players in the world, including Toumani Diabate, Mory Kante, Mamadou Diabate, Ballake Sissoko, and others.
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This weekend brings the Spirit of West Africa festival at the Seattle Center. Which prompts a show filled with the dynamic sounds of the region, from traditional griot music to cross-cultural blends and a slew of guitar music.
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We counted down the best new global sounds from the July Spin The Globe / SoundRoots Top 10 chart this week, with a break in the middle for a fascinating conversation with guitarist Leni Stern, who has recently found a great groove in collaborating with West African musicians. She’s currently on tour as well.
If you’re around the Olympia area this weekend, be sure to drop by the KAOS booth at Lakefair. I’ll be down there this afternoon, and would love to talk with you about global music. Or drop me a line here with any show comments or suggestions.
Prompted by a new CD release and a local concert tomorrow, we explored the many sounds of the West African kora today — a harp that’s been used in classical Jali (griot) music as well as in global fusions with other instruments. In the second hour of the show, new releases and concert previews. And congrats to the listeners who won tickets to see Erev Rav and Vagabond Opera — I’ll see you at the show.
This show is a musical journey across Coastal West Africa, from Senegal in the north to Nigeria on the southern end. We mixed it up with both new and old music, to give a sense of the wide variety of music as we journey through time and through different tribes and nations.
Special congratulations to the listeners who won tickets to see Eliane Elias this weekend!
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Alif (Senegal) – Dakamerap – Dakamerap
Foday Musa Suso (The Gambia) – Bunfa Silence – The Dreamtime
Super Mama Djombo (Guinea-Bissau) – Aboku Boku Bandi – Super Mama Djombo
Famoro Dioubate’s Kakande (Guinea) – Bani – Dununya
Refugee Allstars (Sierra Leone) – Gbrr Mani – Rise & Shine
Malinda Parker & Howard Hayes (Liberia) – Bush Cow Milk – Songs of the African Coast: Café Music of Liberia
Manou Gallo (Ivory Coast) – Desert – Lowlin
Koo Nimo (Ghana) w/ Vishal Nagar – Aguado – Koo Nimo & Vishal Nagar
Tony Allen (Nigeria) – Afro-Disco-Beat (excerpt) – Racubah! – A Collection of Modern Afro Rhythms
Bella Bellow (Togo) – O Senye – Bem Bem EP
Julien Jacob (Benin) – Attends – Shanti
The Funkees (Nigeria) – Dancing Time – Nigeria 70: The Definitive Story of 1970’s Funky Lagos
Sabu Fanye – Wontanara – Audio Refuge
Doug Cox & Salil Bhatt – Make a Better World – Slide to Freedom 2
Brandon Terzic – Butterfly – Xalam Project
Eliane Elias – A Ra (the Frog) – Bossa Nova Stories
Ablaye Cissoko & Volker Goetze – Sakhadougou – Sira
Autorickshaw – Chennai Five-O – Four Higher
Staff Benda Bilili – Moziki – Tres Tres Fort
Ciro Hurtado – Marinera III – In My Mind
Ziggy Marley – Shalom Salaam – Dragonfly
Tinariwen – Asuf D Alwa – Tassili
Pharaoh’s Daughter – Askinu – Haran