Seckou Keita

Mali

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    8
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A nice bit of Malian kora music, with stray bits of non-kora music thrown in to boot. Seckou Keita hails from the royal Keita lineage (as did Salif Keita), as well as the Sissoko griot lineage. While normally playing with the Sissoko family, Keita is a veteran of Baka Beyond and a solo performer in his own right. Here, the fare is essentially traditional instrumental music and vocals. The topics of the songs range over the spectrum of societal values, as is the wont for many griots. Perhaps the most interesting item here, though, is the composition "Foune," where Keita makes use of the djembe, along with the Senegalese sabar and bougarabou and the Malian seourouba. It's a basic call-and-response pattern, but the collection of drumming ideas from different regions makes for an interesting time. The rest of the album showcases some fine work on the kora primarily, without any given highlight, but instead a general level of good performance that holds throughout. Overall, it's a nice collection of music in general. Worth listening to by those interested in making inroads into Malian music and those already acquainted with it alike.

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