Hasna El Bécharia is extraordinary. She is still the only woman in the Maghreb to play gnawi music, a ceremonial beat that has remained an exclusively male preserve since the animist beliefs of the Bilad es-Sudan, (in Arabic, the Land of the Blacks – today’s Guinea, Senegal, Mali, Niger and Chad) encountered the monotheist faith of Islam from across the desert. Her choice has exposed her to a great deal of rejection and sarcasm, but Hasna’s mind and soul are irrevocably bound up with the mystic trance music learnt from her father, a pious man who was himself a maâllem or master of gnawi (the plural of gnawa) syncretism, a black Sufism forged by the descendants of sub-Saharan slaves in White Africa, also called diwan in East Algeria and stambali in Tunisia. Here is her song “Hakmet Lakdar”
BRANDNEW SONG! A song I don’t know more about, but it’s multi-cultural. Seems to be from Fore from Mali. But it’s awesome good african music. The ‘Ce n’est pas bon’ in the background is by Amadou & Mariam. About political and society problems. “C’est pas Bon”, in english: that’s not good:
Dobet Gnahoré, born in 1982, is a singer from Côte d’Ivoire. Since 1999, she’s living in Marseille, France due to civil wars in her homeland. Listen to her nice song “Abiani”:
The indie band Eric & Magill from Kenya and the US released a new album called “Two Travelers”. Really an interesting and relaxed indie album. Like it!
Listen to “They make it so good” too!
Cheb Mami is an algerian Rai and pop musician, born in 1966. As I’m really a fan of african culture and music, I like his song “Aller les Africains”, in english: go on africans. Hope they’d start a way out of war up to peace.
Mojave 3 are a british dream and alternative pop band, arised of Slowdive members in 1995. Here’s their song “Prayer for the Paranoid”:
Irmãos Verdade is a Angolan Kizomba/Semba Band. They decided to experiment the angolan Kuduro genre. Here is their fusion of Kizomba and Kuduro “Kuduro Kaliente”:
Bonga Kwenda (born José Adelino Barceló de Carvalho, 1943), better known as Bonga, is a folk and semba singer and songwriter from Angola. Bonga was born in the province of Bengo, and left Angola at age 23 to become an athlete, becoming the Portuguese record holder for the 400 metres (Angola was at the time one of Portugal’s five African colonies). He had already begun his singing career at age 15. Here is the song “Mona ki ngi xica”
The Iris Sudan Children’s Choir is another great african children’s choir, singing in Juba Arabic. Here’s their song “Beled Sudani“, originally writtem by Kat Maples:
I found it on Junubsudan’s Blog, where you also can read more about this song!