Friday, January 02, 2009

774. Ali Farka Toure with Ry Cooder - Talking Timbuktu (1994)

Track Listing

1. Bonde
2. Soukora
3. Gomni
4. Sega
5. Amandrai
6. Lasidan
7. Kelto
8. Banga
9. Ai Du
10. Diaraby


Many see this album as representing a tradition of African music from where the Blues are derived. I certainly do not doubt that the Blues have strong African influence, but it is also naive to suppose that between the creation of the Blues in America and 1994 Mali was not aware of that musical style.

So in my opinion the thing is a two way process, Toure's music is too similar to the Blues of the early 20th century not to have been influenced by it, even if his style has older roots. Anyone who thinks the opposite, including the majority of music critics, has a very patronising view of Mali. It might be in Africa, but it is not in a different planet.

This does not in any way detract from the pretty amazing music in this album. It is this synthesis between the Blues and traditional African music that makes it all the more attractive, at least to an audience used to the blues. The music is generally great, and the last two tracks are particularly amazing creating a perfect synthesis between Blues and Mali music. Highly Recommended.

Track Highlights

1. Diaraby
2. Ai Du
3. Soukora
4. Amandrai

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

The guitar riff from the song "Diaraby" was selected for the Geo-quiz segment of The World PRI-BBC radio program and was retained by popular demand when put to a vote by the listeners.


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