Thursday, 21 January 2021

Terakaft - 2014 Sziget Festival Budapest FHE

Terakaft at the 2014 Sziget Festival in Budapest [picture: FHE]

This time of the year, half of January, used to be the Festival in the Desert in Mali. It has been held from 2000 till 2012, after which first the rebellion then its aftermath and now the Corona-virus pandemic, all have caused that it could not be held somewhere in the Sahara Sand near Timbuktu. I have posted before some less known recordings of the festival, have some more but these still need some preparation works. So decided to post recordings of a Tamasheq group at a European festival.

Biography of Terakaft

Nicknamed Khiwaj (the Giant), Kedou is known to all the Tuaregs, as much for his active involvement in the rebellion, as as an emblematic musician in early Tinariwen.
He experienced exile in Algeria, then the Libyan training camps in the 1980s. It was in this context that he met Ibrahim Abaraybone and Intiyeden, beginning with them the long history of Tinariwen. He has fought in Lebanon, in Chad under the Libyan flag and engaged in the rebellion of 1990.
After the peace agreements, he participated in 1992 with Hassan, Diara and Abdallah in the first studio recording of Tinariwen in Abidjan, then in 2001 recording the album "The Radio Tisdas Session". At the time when Tinariwen reached international notoriety, Kedou continued his own path in Algeria.
In 2007, he returned to Kidal to form the group Terakaft with Diara (brother of Intiyeden and another historical composer of Tinariwen) and young guitarists from Adrar, giving birth to "Bismilla", his first western album, followed in 2008 with "Akh issudar".
After their 2008 European tour and the album "Akh isshudar", Kedou decided to leave the group, which tightens around Diara and Sanou and young musicians of Adrar. Then follow the albums "Aratan n Azawad" (2011) and "Kel tamasheq" (2012).
source: [through the wayback machine]

Listen to Kel Tamasheq [live]

TERAKAFT 20140816 - Sziget Budapest FHE

recorded 2014.Aug.16, Sziget Festival on an island in the Danube in Budapest
bc.2014.Sep.15, FunkHaus Europa - World Live [now called Cosmo - World Live]

setlist: 1.Ténéré Wer Tat Zinchegh / 2.Alla Fall Manine / 3.Diya Idohana / 4.Kel Tamasheq / 5.Arghane Manine / 6.Imad Halan / 7.Wer Esinen / 8.Imidiwan / 9Aimama Imaima / 10.Mijao / 11.Tameyawte / 12.Karambani

line-up [probably]: Liya Ag Ablil, aka Diara - gitaar, zang / Sanou Ag Ahmed - basgitaar / Nicolas Grupp - drums

Some links to enjoy:

added link: 

Short Discography

2007: Bismilla [CD, Tapsit]
2008: VA - Ishumar [CD compilation, Reaktion]
2008: Akh issudar [CD, Tapsit]
2009: Live 2008 [digital, Tapsit / Reaktion]
2011: Aratan n'Azawad [CD, World Village]
2012: Kel Tamasheq [CD, World Village]
2012: VA - Songs for Desert Refugees [CD compilation, Glitterhouse]
2014: The Tapsit Years [CD compilation, Reaktion]
2015: Alone - Ténéré [CD/LP, Out Here Records]


"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the sand in the Sahara desert (in Niger)

Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Jali Nyama Suso - 1986.Sep.10 Kershaw Session

Jali Nyama Suso 1984 [photo by Dagmar Gebers, source: fmp-label]

To follow-up the Mbira from Zimbabwe with the Kora from West-Africa felt like a very good idea, so I looked which special recordings I have. That appeared to be a repeat of two tracks of a 1986 Radio Session by Jali Nyama Suso, which seemed to be an Andy Kershaw session. So checked the recently found Andy Kershaw fansite [see the post about Oumou Sangare's 1993 Session] and found there two other tracks, which on closer hearing appeared to be the [almost] complete session. Almost because at least one track, which I had already in the repeat version, is edited.

About Jali Nyama Suso

Jali Nyama Suso from Bakau (born circa 1925; died 1991) is acknowledged as one of the greatest kora players of the 20th century. Born Mohamadu Lamin Suso, Jali Nyama was one of the first artists to bring the kora to international attention through his work as a performer, teacher and historian.
By the age of 8 he was already playing the kora but his career as a griot was severely hampered at the age of 16 by the loss of his leg. However, undeterred, he moved into radio in 1956 and went on to establish his own weekly radio show which ran for over 20 years.
In 1971 he was invited to teach at the University of Washington where he recorded his first album, Gambie: L’Art de la Kora - Jali Nyama Suso. This was the first international album of solo kora which featured him both playing and singing. He also contributed as a Gambian historical advisor to Alex Haley in the celebrated world-wide television series, Roots.
In the 80’s he toured in UK, France, Sweden and Germany leaving his distinct artistic imprint on the world. He is remembered by kora players for his brilliance of tone and his distinctive colours and timbres he brought to the instrument. He is also remembered as the composer of the Gambia national anthem which is based on the traditional melody of Fode Kabba. He passed away in 1991 from tuberculosis after several years of illness.
source: [incl.short video!]

Listen to Lucy [in edited version]

SUSO JALI NYAMA - 19860910 Kershaw Session BBC

BBC 1986.Sep.10 Kershaw Session - bc.1986.Oct.02 BBC Radio 1 Andy Kershaw
tracklist: 1.Jali Nyama Suso* / 2.Lucy* [edit] / 3.Kuruntu Kelefa* / 4.Sunkariba*

rpt.of above session 2019.Jul.29, BBC 6music Gideon Coe
tracklist: 2.Lucy* / 3.Kuruntu Kelefa*

And I have a bonus again: The Kora Trail a 1998 BBC Radio special with Lucy Duran telling about her adventures in Gambia, Senegal and Mali. After she fell in love with the music of the Kora, she wanted to learn to play the Kora herself and stayed in a small village on the Gambia river.
The audio is from a real audio, which I some years ago succeeded to downstream, after having discovered the original link through The audio has some glitches, but don't let that hinder you listening to Lucy's great story.
All further background info about this program I have found is included in the download.

More about and with the Kora

  • Making the Kora - Documentary [1970, enbedded video from vimeo; 14:06] -
  • Kasse Mady & the African Classical Music Ensemble feat.Tunde Jegede on Kora - live filmed on the banks of the Niger in Mali - vimeo
  • Towards a Notation and Tablature for the Kora and its Application to Other Instruments - 1971.Jul.07, article by Roderick Knight, published in African Music Vol.5 No.1 (1971)
  • The Making of a Kora - re-edited film by Anthony King shot 1970 in Gambia - vimeo
  • Jali Nyama Muso - Kora Music from Gambia - bandcamp
    listen to tracknr.1: Jula Dekaray
  • VA - African Journey - A Search for the Roots of the Blues Vol.1 [LP, 1974, Sonet #SNTP.666]
    posted at music-republic-world-traditional - recordings made by Samuel Charters with 2 tracks by Jali Nyama Suso


"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the Sahara desert (in Niger)

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

Various Zimbabwe - Mbira K7s

Sekuru Thomas Wadharwa Gora
plays mbira [from

K7s are important for the African market: they are easy to duplicate and play. Musically they're interesting because often less concessions are made to Western taste and pop influences. The mbira is a lamellophone, a thumb piano. Traditionally, mbira music was played by, among others, the Shona people in long nocturnal sessions, the bira, in which people get into a trance and thus come into contact with the ancestors, who are close to the gods. Healing properties are also attributed to mbira music. Nowadays mbira music is also played at parties etc.
K7s included "Shumba" by Sekuru Gora [1996] and "Madzinzinzi" by Mazai Mbira Group [1986].

Sekuru "Grandfather" Gora

Sekuru ("Grandfather") Gora, born Thomas Wadharwa in 1937 and died 2002 March 10, was one of the most famous mbira players of all time. If you go to any corner of Zimbabwe and mention mbira, without fail Sekuru Gora’s name will come up. As a child, Gora would constantly watch his grandfathers building and playing the mbira. When he was fourteen he picked up an mbira for the first time and, to everyone’s amazement, was already able to play. Even at that early age he was called on to play at the mapira ceremony, where a homwe (spirit medium) becomes possessed by an ancestral spirit with the help of the mbira music. These ancestral spirits guide and protect their living descendants. Gora was a master at conveying a message in extremely witty and sometimes biting ways.

Mazai Mbira Group

Although not so popular in Zimbabwe, Mazai Mbira Group is one of the most versatile mbira group in Zimbabwe, with their unique intepretation of popular arrangements in the mbira repertoire.

Listen to Shumba by Sekuru Gora

VA ZIMBABWE K7s - Mbira Music [CZ]

recorded from ConcertZender in 2006.Nov.25, tracklist:

  • Sekuru Gora: 1.Chipembere / 2.Kuzanga / 3.Bukatiende / 4.Shumba / 5.Chipindura / 6.Nhema Musasa
  • Mazai Mbira Group: 11.Tibayane / 12.Vavarira / 13.Bangiza

MultiMedia [some]:

  • short video with Sekuru "Grandfather" Gora - vimeo 
  • book: The Art of Mbira - Musical Inheritance and Legacy [2020, by Paul F. Berliner]
  • Mbira Singles Collection posted in 2009 at wrldsrv

Discographies [probably far from complete]

Sekuru "Grandfather" Gora
1983: Ephat Mujuru & Spirit of the People - Mbavaira [LP/K7] - featuring Thomas Wadharwa Gora on vocals and lead mbira
1987: Ephat Mujuru & Spirit of the People - Mutimukuru [LP/K7] - vocals by Gora Thomas Wadharwa
COMP: Ephat Mujuru Mbira Ensemble 1980 - Mavembe (Gandanga) Tuning - at
1991: Thomas ‘Sekuru Gora’ Wadharwa & Tute Chigamba / Tute & Henry Chigamba - Gandanga/Mavembe Tuning [Mbira] - at
1996: Shumba [1996, K7, Zimbabwe #RTLP.164] - played tracks are from this K7
2001: Sekuru Gora with Chigamba and Moyo - Vakuru Chaivo [CD] - at
COMP: Mavembe/Gandanga Tuning Collection #3 - at

Mazai Mbira Group

1985: Chapunga [LP, Zimbabwe #ZML.1023]
1986: Madzinzinzi [LP/K7, Zimbabwe #ZML.1029] - at hollandtunneldive
1988: Nyamaropa Nhimutimu [1988, LP, Zimbabwe ?#ZML.1036] - at zambuko
COMP: Mazai Mbira Group - Mavembe/Gandanga Tuning Collection #2 [download] - at
2009: Mazai Mbira Group 2009 - Gandanga/Mavembe Tuning Mbira [CD/download] - at


"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the Sahara desert (in Niger)

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Various Senegal from K7s (2008)

Jus de Mangue 100% Naturel 100% Sénégal

In the series of K7s radioshows, this time K7s from Senegal broadcasted in 2008 by the ConcertZender.

From the program info: "a stack of cassettes with artists from Senegal who play in the Mbalax style: Kiné Lam, Ives Niang, Abdou Guité Seck, Assane Gaye, Titi, Fallou Dieng and Mbaye Dieye Faye.
Mbalax developed in Senegal in the late 1960s and is a mix between modern Western and popular African influences, such as Soukous (Congo) and Coupé-Décalé (Ivory Coast), and traditional Senegalese music, with spicy sabar percussion. All sing in their native language Wolof."

Various SENEGAL K7s - 2008 CZ

Full Tracklist

1.Kiné Lam - Celibataire (1990, K7, Balla Aïssa Boury) - full K7 at ndiakhass (more Kiné Lam there!)
   started in 1972 with traditional group, did theatre for some years, and is still going strong as one of the most famous female voices of Senegal
   more info at musiques-afrique - in total twelfe K7s-CDs listed at natari
   another K7, Sunu Thiossane 2, 2011.Apr posted at awesometapes (later also at ndiakhass)

2.Ives Niang - Fatoumata (from his 2nd K7)
   young singer [in 2008]

3.Abdou Guité Seck - Nina (2006, live K7, Ete Show) - musiques-afrique
   played in the band Wock, later started a solo carreer
   more through at / disco at (K7 not mentioned)

4.Assane Gaye - Nguem (2005, Ngeum) - afromix / youtube (2012.Apr.09 by CherieLaminSaho)
5.Assane Gaye - Teylou Len (2005, Ngeum)
   Assane Gaye alias Thione [Seck] 2 is one of the best Senegalese singer from his generation. Since 2013 he's living in and playing his music from Finland.

6.Titi - Yeena Aaye (K7, Amul Nu Malene Beguewoul) - youtube (2016.Jun.26 by Falilou Ndiaye)
   around 2008 one the most popular female singers in Senegal

7.Fallou Dieng - Beuge Tekki (200x, K7, Feuk Dieuf) - afromix / many K7s at ndiakhass
8.Fallou Dieng - Bouko Bayi (2002, K7, Bouko Bayi) - this K7 at ndiakhass
   nicknamed 'le Roi de l'Ambiance' because he invented a famous mbalax dance

9.Mbaye Dieye Faye - Rimbi Rimbi (K7, Rimbi Rimbi) - youtube (2016.Aug.21 by Falilou Ndiaye)
   percussionist in the "Super Etoile" band, made several solo K7s


"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the Sahara desert (in Niger)

Thursday, 31 December 2020

Mamar Kassey - 2013.Dec.11 KIT Dusseldorf FHE

Mamar Kassey in 2013 [picture from]


The name Mamar Kassey belongs to the history of the Songhay people whose empire was extended from Walata (Moroco) to Dendi (Dahomey-nowadays called Benin). Mamar Kassey is the most famous of those people's ancestors who decided, to avoid fratricidal conflicts, to exile all along the Niger river and establish themselves in the areas of Kolmane, Yatakala, Wanzarbé, Tillabéry, Gotheye, Téra, Gaya and as far as Kandi in Benin.
Original band Mamar Kassey was created 1995 November 22 by two men: Yacouba Moumouni and Abdallah Al Hassane who are musicians trained by the "Centre de Formation et de Promotion Musicale de Niamey (CFPN Elhadj Taya)".
Yacouba Moumouni, more known under the nickname of "Denke Denke", nowadays is considered to be the most popular artist in Niger. Mamar Kassey is widely appreciated in all Western Africa. Tradition is not a limitation for Mamar Kassey's music but the dynamic element giving it all a sense and taste.
The essence of tradition flows into the band's compositions, free from any rigid codes, thanks to its open minded view of the music and respect of oral traditional singing. It propagates at the speed of light through the calabash's tempo and the "kalangou" drum. It unites in a subtle game of contrasts, the melodic lines of the rhythm guitar and of the little luth "Komsa". It talks through the singing and the "Seysé" flute which bounces as a tightrope on the lines of a bass under high voltage.
Mamar Kassey plays brilliantly and with professionalism well-executed arrangements supporting Yacouba's beautiful and powerful voice, full of sensuality and warmth with an authentic Nigerian identity strongly affirmed by a subtle play, performed by the traditional lutes "Komsa" and "Molo" and an armpit drum (Kalangou).
The beauty of dancers gestures is in perfect harmony with the rhythmic and melodic nuances of well-executed music. Mamar Kassey's music is a lot more than an addition of talents. It is the expression of a mutating culture, the link between the secret words of an art reserved to the "hogon" masters, God, fetishes and the universal language of the new millennium.
The band is not a mere coincidence but the accomplishment of combined efforts of men and women convinced by the necessity to give Nigeria its voice into the concert of world's music.
source: [disappeared, not archived]

Listen to the start of the recording

MAMAR KASSEY - 20131211 Dusseldorf FHE

Mamar Kassey - rec.2013.Dec.11 Dusseldorf - bc.2013.12.13 Funkhaus Europa 23h "World Live" 

setlist unknown, recording split-up in:
1.concert pt.1 / interview / 2.concert pt.2 / 3.encore
probable line-up: Yacouba Moumouni - vocals, Peul flute, dance / Harouna "Harou" Abdou - bass, choir / Boubacar "Barry" Souleymane - calebas, vocals, choir / Abdramane Albarka - electric guitar / Adamou Daouda - kalangou (talking drums) / Seyni Halidou - molo, komsa (2/3 stringed lutes) / Fatoumata Amadou - vocals, choir, dance / Catherine Onadja - choir, dance

Related MultiMedia:

  • Mamar Kassey in 2014.Jan at VPRO Vrije Geluiden: Daneedjo / Mali [on youtube]

as Mamar Kassey are from Niger, they may be aware of:

"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the Sahara desert (in Niger)

Tuesday, 29 December 2020

NAJMA - Qareeb - Closeness (1987, LP)

Najma - Qareeb [1987]

This post is related to the one of the day before yesterday, yes really to Christy Moore [!]. How's that, you might think now, well let me explain.
After the Christy Moore's concert I enjoyed, I wanted to hear much more from him. Didn't have any albums or any other form of recordings by him. So when shortly afterwards I was at a record fair, helping out a friend who had a stall there, I searched between the folk music bins for albums by Christy. To my disappointment couldn't find any, but came across a very interesting looking album by Najma. Who I had never heard about, nor was I especially interested in music from India, but it lookied so good that I bought it. Played it when arriving at home, and really really liked what I heard. It remains upto today a very special record for me.

This time no live nor session recordings, simply because I haven't got any from Najma, so decided to present to you the vinyl through which I discovered her beautiful music many years ago.

Introducing Najma

Najma Akhtar, a British born, singer, songwriter, composer and actor has achieved a place in world music history as one of the true pioneers of uniquely fusing Western and Eastern musical styles. She has recorded many solo albums and is credited in crafting a new musical genre, in which Jazz nuances are blended with the Ghazal (Urdu ballad) and Sufi (Devotional poetry) repertoires.
Her ground-breaking and innovative debut album, ‘Qareeb' (Closeness), remains one of the most important world music albums ever recorded catapulting Najma into the World Music arena.
Even though her music has remained rooted in the Ghazal and other traditional music of her ancestral home, her versatility as a writer and composer can be seen through a vast diverse body of work and artistic collaborations with some of the world’s most influential and credible musicians.
Interested to know more, go to

Listen to the bonustrack [rec.1988.Feb.03 for Charlie Gillett]

NAJMA - Qareeb - Closeness (1987, LP)

a1.Neend Kohyi (6:42) / a2.Jaane Kis Tarhan (6:17) / a3.Dil Laga Ya Yha (5:48) //
b1.Zikar Hai Apna Mehfil (6:29) / b2.Karoon Na Yaad Magar (8:57) / b3.Har Sitam Aap Ka (9:11) //
bonus.Apne Hathon (5:26) recorded 1988.Feb.03 at Capital Radio for Charlie Gillett's 'World of Difference'.


1986: Ghazals [LP, Last Minute Productions]
1987: Qareeb [LP/CD, Triple Earth Records]
1989: Atish [LP/CD, Triple Earth Records]
1992: Pukar [CD, Ark 21 Records]
1996: Forbidden Kiss - the Songs of S.D.Burman [CD, Last Minute Productions]
2002: Vivid [CD, Last Minute Productions]
2008: Fariyaad - A Plea to the Creator [CD,]
2009: with Gary Lucas - Rishte [2009, World Village]
2020: Five Rivers [CD/LP, Last Minute Productions]

PS: If I remember well Najma has performed at one [or more?] of the Festival au Desert in Mali, dont know exactly when and can't find information now preparing this post. Anyway, may be there are some recordings from, if I find will include links in this post.

by the way NEVER FORGET:

"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the Sahara desert (in Niger)

Monday, 28 December 2020

Nahawa Doumbia - 2020.Feb.04 KIT Dusseldorf

Nahawa Doumbia live in 2019

Early this year, before the virus hit our lives, there was live music to be enjoyed. One of those highlights I could catch from the German COSMO radio station [former FunkHaus Europa], Nahawa Doumbia at KIT in Dusseldorf.


Nahawa Doumbia was born in 1960 in Mafélé (Mali), a little village located near the border between Mali and Ivory Coast. A few days after she gave birth to Nahawa, her dying mother predicted her daughter a great career as a singer, though she did not belong to the griot caste.
"Nobody was allowed to sing in my family. That is why it has been so hard for me to come to music. One day, agents of the malian Ministry of Culture came to see my father and told him that I should take part in the "Youth Week" local event. He refused but I eventually was able to take part in it. Then I came to Bamako to compete at the "Youth Biennial", an event showing young artistic talents from Mali. I have been prized in 1980 with one of my songs. It was the very beginning of my career..."
Nahawa is now a star in Mali. The charm of her thin, childish voice made her one of the vocal references from western Africa. The queen of Didadi - a rhythm from Wassoulou region danced by young people at ceremonies and celebrations - decided to return to Wassoulou instrumental tradition with balafon, djembe, kamélé n'goni and guitars.
In 2011 the critically acclaimed blogger and ethnomusicologist Brian Shimkovitz chose Nahawa's early tape La Grande Cantatrice Malienne, Vol.3 to become the first official release on his new Awesome Tapes From Africa label. It received rave reviews worldwide. In 2015 Nahawa Doumbia played at the Le Guess Who? festival in Utrecht to great acclaim. This year, 2020, she was back with her band, still singing and swinging as ever before, untill the Corona-virus struck us all... Meanwhile she recorded her new album Kanawa, to be realeased early next year [2021]!
source: Mali K7 [from 2004] with recent additions from EarthBeat

NAHAWA DOUMBIA - 2020.Feb04 KIT Dusseldorf COSMO

setlist: 1.Mbalima Nyuma / 2.Nkaranka Tji / 3.Djon Konian / 4.Ntana / 5.Dunukan / 6.Sogo Duno / 7.Korodia / 8.Yan Kadi / 9.Sokono Wuluni

line-up: Nahawa Doumbia - vocals / N'Gou Bagayoko - guitar / Drissa Sidibe - n'goni

When downloading enjoy a 2015 Malian videoclip from Nahawa

For your full information an extensive discography and collected articles about Nahawa are all included in the download.

For who has enough time now between Christmas and New Year and is interested to see a very good film, I highly recommend to watch a beautiful film directed by Idrissa Ouedraogo from Burkina Faso. Have seen it several times at various locations, even once on Guinean TV in the court-yard of the compound I was staying then. I think it's very fitting in this Corona-virus year, which has hit our elderly the hardest.
You can watch Yaaba [1989] at youtube [with subtitles, if needed!]

By The Way NEVER Forget:

"il faut me pardonner - you must forgive me"

Pap Djah's last words before left on his own in the Sahara desert (in Niger)