Sep 10, 2013

RhoDeo 1336 Roots

Hello, we still find ourselves in an environment that gave rise to the worlds monotheistic religions be that on the Arabian peninsula, here we stay in the Saharan/Sahel band stretching from the West-Atlantic coast to the highlands of Ethiopia in the east of the continent, a vast area where fresh water useally tends to come at a premium , where the sun is burning down during daytime and nighttime can be cold, where the moon is the sole light source apart from the warming campfires. Is it any surprise then that singing and making music together lifted the spirits of those gathering in these desolate landscapes. And the moon became their God.

Today more from Mali, after all it has one of the most intensely musical cultures in all Africa. The first African bluesman to achieve widespread popularity on his home continent, he was often known as “the African John Lee Hooker”. Musically, the many superpositions of guitars and rhythms in his music were similar to John Lee Hooker’s hypnotic blues style. He usually sang in one of several African languages. Today's artist was ranked number 76 on Rolling Stone’s list of “The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time. It is unfortunate that the early recordings by this brilliant Malian guitarist/singer/ songwriter have been somewhat overshadowed by his better-known collaborations with Western artists, but not today. .......N'joy

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He was born in 1939 in the village of Kanau, on the banks of the Niger River in the cercle of Gourma Rharous in the northwestern Malian region of Tombouctou. His family moved to the nearby village of Niafunké when he was still an infant. He was the tenth son of his mother but the only one to survive past infancy. “The name I was given was Ali Ibrahim, but it’s a custom in Africa to give a child a strange nickname if you have had other children who have died”, Touré was quoted as saying in a biography on his Record Label, World Circuit Records. His nickname, “Farka”, chosen by his parents, means “donkey”, an animal admired for its tenacity and stubbornness: “Let me make one thing clear. I’m the donkey that nobody climbs on!” Ethnically, he was part Songrai part Fula.

As the first African bluesman to achieve widespread popularity on his home continent, Touré was often known as “the African John Lee Hooker”. Musically, the many superpositions of guitars and rhythms in his music were similar to John Lee Hooker’s hypnotic blues style. He usually sang in one of several African languages. His international breakthrough album, Ali Farka Touré (88),  established his reputation in the world music community. His 6th World Circuit album 1994’s Talking Timbuktu, a collaboration with Ry Cooder, sold  well in western markets and got him his first Grammy Award. After a hiatus from releases in America and Europe Touré reappeared in 1999 with the release of Niafunké.

In 2002 he appeared with Black American blues and reggae performer Corey Harris, on an album called Mississippi to Mali (Rounder Records). Toure and Harris also appeared together in Martin Scorsese's 2003 documentary film Feel Like Going Home, which traced the roots of blues back to its genesis in West Africa. The film was narrated by Harris and features Ali’s performances on guitar and njarka.

In 2004 Touré became mayor of Niafunké and spent his own money grading the roads, putting in sewer canals and fuelling a generator that provided the impoverished town with electricity.In September 2005, he released the album In the Heart of the Moon, a collaboration with Toumani Diabaté, for which he received a second Grammy award. On 7 March 2006 the Ministry of Culture of Mali announced Touré 's death at age 66 in Bamako from bone cancer, against which he had been battling for some time. His last album, Savane, was posthumously released in July 2006. It was received with wide acclaim by professionals and fans alike and has been nominated for a Grammy Award in the category “Best Contemporary World Music Album”. It was later discovered that he had completed impromptu sessions a year before his death alongside Malian kora player Toumani Diabaté in London. The results of these sessions were released in the simply titled 2010 record Ali & Toumani.

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Internationally feted at the age of 50, Ali Farka Touré's life was not always so easy. Up till the release of this, his third album, he was virtually unknown in West Africa and a non-entity in the world music community. Before this album bought him fame, if not fortune, Touré's life resembled Amos Tutuola's in Palm Wine Drunkard, a mixture of hard times and legend. What made Touré stand out from the crowd was his mixture of these two elements, a blues-based singing style close to John Lee Hooker and a particularly African choice of subject matter, often rooted in West African myth and folktale. On this release, Touré performs most often unaccompanied relying entirely on the magnetism of his beautiful voice and the counterpoint of his rhythmic guitar. The improvisatory yet lyrical bluesy guitar and the determined mournful voice backed by Hammer Sankare's sympathetic vocals and sparse yet insistent calabash percussion tapping out mesmeric rhythms that give the music a forward impetus.

The "Red" is the album that BBC Radio 3's Andy Kershaw found in a bargain bin in Paris, when Ali was a nobody. This discovery convinced him to implore World Circuit's Anne Hunt to help find him and bring him to London, which they did, launching Ali's career.



Ali Farka Toure - Red (flac  253mb)

01 La Drogue 5:33
02 Ali Aoudy 6:32
03 Cheri 4:36
04 Timbindy 5:41
05 Lalayche 5:29
06 Ketine 7:10
07 Laisse Les Phases 4:36
08 Baliky Lalo 3:41

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If you're a fan of acoustic guitars in the right hands, if you're a fan of rhythm that crawls into your soul until you realize you've been hypnotized, rocking back and forth on the floor or couch or front porch for the past hour, you should buy this. Ali was an undeniable master of touch and tone. Basically he's playing a guitar that you might be able to sell on eBay for $20 yet his tone is pure magic. It's a singular voice in the world of guitar. During the Red & Green years he truly had the high voice that's often favored in various cultures throughout Africa. There are tunes during his middle-aged (and later) years that have a similar sort of mood as some of Hooker's greats from the Chess years. Ali was one of the greats of the 20th Century. Red & Green may be his pinnacle. No sweetening, no fancy studio ambiance, no overdubs in European studios: just an unknown Malian playing instantly hypnotic melodies on a cheap guitar or njarka and singing in a high-tenor nasal-y, reed-y voice, accompanied by a fellow playing a calabash. When Toure's music is stripped to essentials, one realizes where the power of those later albums comes from



Ali Farka Toure - Green (African Blues) (flac 263mb)

01 Sidy Gouro 3:45
02 Okatagouna 4:22
03 Devele Wague 5:59
04 N'Timbara 3:58
05 Zona 7:45
06 Mbaudy 8:52
07 Petenere 4:50
08 L'Exode 5:21

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This 1990 recording contains one of the best African blues tunes ever recorded, and a classic Ali Farka Toure moment. As the electric guitar roars in at the opening, punctured by a darting harmonica line, "Heygana" lays out the roots and branches of the blues in its journey from west Africa to the Americas, and more importantly, back again. Sung in the Songhai language, pushed by a vaguely reggae groove and pulled along by a sometimes idiosyncratic percussion line on a calabash, it pretty well epitomizes what Toure is about. The sound is stripped down, with the guitar and voice working a bare minimum groove. The calabash clicks, a thick stringed ngoni adds some punch, and a few tracks feature Toure on the njarka (fiddle). In addition to Rory McLeod's harmonica, there is one piece with The Chieftains' Seane Keane and Kevin Conneff on fiddle and bodhran (Irish goatskin drum), and a marvelous duet with saxophonist Steve Williamson that adds a little sideways R&B. The River is one of Toure's most straightforward recordings made in the decade after the light of his international fame had first shone. It's happy, melancholy, energetic, sentimental and fervently passionate all at once.



Ali Farka Touré - The River   (flac  362mb)

01 Heygana  5:58
02 Goydiotodam 6:24
03 Ai Bine 6:20
04 Tangambara 5:22
05 Toungere 7:31
06 Jungou 7:23
07 Kenouna 5:02
08 Boyrei 5:22
09 Tamala 8:06
10 Lobo 6:44
11 Instrumental 2:58

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previously

Sunshine Sahara, Sept 07

Ali Farka Toure ft Ry Cooder - Talking Timbuktu ( flac 320mb)

Rhotation 45, Sept 08

Ali Farka Touré & Toumani Diabaté - In The Heart Of The Moon (flac 292mb)

1107 Roots Feb 11

Ali Farka Toure - The Source (92  284mb)

Ali Farka Toure - Niafunke (99  298mb)

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2 comments:

Musrafak said...

All The links are dead

Anonymous said...

Could you please reup Ali Farka Touré? Thanks in advance.