A blog about arts and societies around the world

Tag: Music

Mustafa al Sunni: Songs of the Sudan

Mustafa al Sunni is a Sudanese folk musician. In 1999 was released Songs of the Sudan, his only album to date. Let’s go back in time and revisit this unique gem. One thing in life that I love, it’s chance encounters. Whether it’s with a person, a place or a piece of music. I haven’t… Read More ›

Riff Cohen A Paris

So you’ve had enough from the all-you-can-hear music buffet. It’s gone way past indigestion. They sell it as the brand-new-must-listen-to, yet it all sounds like it’s been heard time and time again. As you’re trying to run away, Riff Cohen’s silhouette rises. You look up. She’s standing there on top of a mount of olives… Read More ›

Pédro Kouyaté, a cross cultural griot

I’ve recently had a chat with Pedro Kouyaté, a passionate and nonconformist Malian musician living in Paris. His third album, Live, has recently hit the shelves. Pedro Kouyaté is not a typical griot artist. In West Africa, griots are the guardians of oral tradition. They can be historians, storytellers or musicians. Pedro was born of… Read More ›

Interview with Vieux Farka Touré & Idan Raichel

Vieux Farka Touré and Idan Raichel, the Touré-Raichel Collective, launched the 2012 edition of the Jazz N Klezmer festival. I spoke with these two wandering musicians after the show. Music has no frontiers. For millennia, musicians have traveled through mountains, deserts and oceans, bringing along their instruments, melodies and influences. They have met other musicians and… Read More ›

Aziza Brahim: The voice of the Sahrawis

Sahrawi singer Aziza Brahim’s debut album Mabruk is out on Reaktion. It’s deep, sincere and militant. Old clichés describing the Sahara as a vast lifeless zone have long gone. The success of the likes of Tinariwen has proved that the region is busy cultural center. Sahrawi is the name of the population living in the… Read More ›

Interview with Femi Kuti: Music and Politics

Femi Kuti needs no introduction. Son of the legendary Fela Kuti, he has released more than a dozen albums, spanning over two decades. Like his father, he cannot dissociate music from the message it conveys. He recently performed in Paris, in the middle of the afternoon. I met him after the show. He gave his… Read More ›

Kora Jazz Band at the New Morning

Building on the release of a recent album, Kora Jazz Band and their brand new line-up delivered a fiery performance at the New Morning in Paris. I obviously would not have missed it for anything. Here’s my verdict. As soon as I entered the jam-packed venue, I could not help but sensing a general impression… Read More ›

Interview with the Orchestre National de Barbès

The Orchestre National de Barbès was playing in London a couple of weeks ago. I met them for a quick chat before the show. They talked about their music, Barbès and also mentioned their views on the current unrest in Arabic countries. Bonus: Chorfa and Salam live in London.                 Read also: Orchestre… Read More ›

Orchestre National de Barbès in London

Going to a concert of L’Orchestre National de Barbès (ONB) always bring along its share of excitement, as the band was almost born on stage. Their first album was recorded live and remains their top selling to date. It was their first performance in London since 2003. They didn’t disappoint, managing yet once again to… Read More ›

Three questions to Maria de Barros

Maria de Barros is just a radiant woman. Wherever she goes, sunshine and joie de vivre come along. She’s Cape Verdean by origin but she’s also a citizen of the world. She was born in Senegal, grew up in Mauritania and eventually settled in the US. Her music blends various influences from samba, salsa to reggae…. Read More ›