Back in the nineties, Madagascar made a foray onto the world music scene with artists like Jaojoby, D’Gary, Tarika, Njava, Rajery and Régis Gizavo, yet contemporary Malagasy musicians haven’t taken up the torch.
Singing about society in Côte d’Ivoire is no easy task. After a decade of crisis that has left the social fabric in tatters, Alpha Blondy’s hopeful new album, Mystic Power, is an invitation to “recycle” pain, trauma and conscience.
The militant campaigner for union and peace in Mali, Cheick Tidiane Seck, is back with Guerrier, an album recorded by the pianist from start to finish and in which he takes a firm stand against one-way globalization. RFI Musique met up with the musician, who is currently organizing a series of conference-debates and concerts for his homeland.
Salif Keïta’s new album, Talé, put together with Gotan Project’s Philippe Cohen-Solal in Bamako, moves away from a pure “club” sound and takes its listeners into electro lands. RFI Musique spoke with the Malian musician.
With his diverting yet deep songs that give food for thought, Elemotho, winner of the 2012 RFI-France 24 Discoveries awards, has been building a reputation beyond the borders of his homeland Namibia for several years. His third album, Ke Nako, out in a few weeks, was co-produced by a French musician living in Windhoek.
They’ve performed their Bantu Groove at venues all round the world. Thirteen years after their first album, and despite losing several of the group’s charismatic members, Mascase are back centre stage. The band boasts a new line-up and some brand new tracks, but their desire to blend Bantu music with modern rhythms is unchanged. RFI Musique spoke to Serge Maboma, bass player and founding member of Macase.
From feminine curves to the scars of civil war in his country, Ivoirian singer Meiway uses his super-danceable zoblazo to convey a whole range of subjects on his new album Professeur. Interview with RFI Musique
The altruist accordionist and champion of fair trade, Régis Gizavo, won RFI Découvertes back in 1990. With his new album, Ilakake, he proves he’s just as adept at opening Malagasy music up to other influences as he is at slotting into the worlds of the musicians he’s accompanied, like Christophe Maé or the late Mano Solo.
Angélique Kidjo is one of the world’s great voices. The artist with Beninese roots has rubbed shoulders with some of the greats, like Aretha Franklin, Desmond Tutu, Alicia Key, and Obama at his inauguration as President. Her travels for UNICEF, supporting women, inspired her new album, Eve, recorded in Africa and New York with a bunch of unknowns and an eclectic guest list: Asa, Dr.