Rokia Traoré: Three Concerts, One Review

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Wednesday June 20, 2012

From The Guardian

Rokia Traore- review
By: Robin Denselow

The finest and most adventurous female singer in Africa is moving on, once again. Rokia Traoré is giving three very different concerts in London this week, performing three sets of new music. At the weekend, she will be playing with young Malian musicians who trained at her Fondation Passerelle in Bamako, and then with her new guitar band, presenting songs from her next album. But first came this gently powerful acoustic tribute to her Malian roots and the remarkable history of a country that is in turmoil.

The setting was a charming, faded music hall in east London. Traoré, sporting cropped hair and a white dress, was perched on a stool flanked by two musicians, Mamadoba Camara playing kora and Mamah Diabaté on n’goni. Damou (Dream) is her version of stories from the Epic of Sundiata, a poem from the country’s oral tradition that tells of the prophecies leading to the birth of Sundiata Keita, founder of the Mandé empire that spread across west Africa in the 13th century.

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