31st May 2015: Baaba Maal – Daande Leñol

Language – Pulaar (I think…)

Translation – Google Translate has not been helpful with this today.  I shall ask around…I am not actually sure if ‘Daande Leñol’ is the name of the song or the whole band.  Help needed today 🙂

This is ace.  I am loving the fact that amidst all of the traditional instruments and clothing, Baaba Maal is sat on a swivel chair and using it to very good effect!  What a beautiful voice!  And what are those instruments that the other two super-talented chaps are playing?

This week I have been quite sad, as I have realised that my knowledge of music from African countries is very poor.  On a positive note, this means I have lots of excellent music to catch up on, and artists to discover.  I am very pleased about that 🙂



30th May 2015: Grand Kalle & l’African Jazz – Jamais Kolonga / Lolo Wa Ngai

Language – French? / Not sure

Translation – Never Kolonga / Not sure (help!)

This is really cheery and upbeat music!  Two songs here (I am really spoiling you today!), that are African but (to me) have a huge hint of Latin American big band music.  These songs requires a dance around the living room.  Off you go, now…

29th May 2015: Mahmoud Guinia – La Ilha Illa Allah Samawi

Language – Arabic

Translation – There is no God but Allah (according to a few things I have looked at – always pleased to have someone who actually knows what they are talking about to correct me though…)

Oops!  For various reasons, it has been a hard week.  I got home last night, had a glass of wine and woke up on the sofa after midnight in the dark as my TV had turned itself off.  Brilliant!  So, here is the track for yesterday with apologies for the delay.  But then, hey, you get two tracks today!  There will be another one along in a bit…

This song is so cool, so simple, but just beautiful.  I am really enjoying the repetitive and rhythmic nature of the tracks I have put up this week.  I have found them quite calming, musically speaking. Maybe that’s why I keep falling asleep!  Anyway, this track is by Mahmoud Guinia (or Guinea, or Guenya, or Khani, or Gania – various spelling choices there…), who is a fabulous proponent of Gnawa music in Morocco and he plays a Guembri (or Sintir – details here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sintir), which he makes sound amazing!  I have an idea – shall we all just go to the next annual festival of Gnawa music in Essaouira?  Yeah, let’s!

28th May 2015: Thomas Mapfumo – Butsu Mutandariaka

Language – Shona (from Zimbabwe)

Translation: butsu mutandarika = Long oversized shoe – many, many thanks to the lovely people @ShonaNdebele for helping me out with this!  (http://shonandebeletutor.com/)

Thomas Mapfumo is something of a legend in Zimbabwe, especially for his political views (yet another person to be exiled…), and for being at the forefront of Chimurenga music.  This track is ace – especially the whistling!

26th May 2015: Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe – Enu Uwa Ebuka

Language – Igbo (from Nigeria)

Translation – Google Translate has this as ‘Desire world stocks’.  I suspect this may be incorrect…according to the very helpful Igbo – English online dictionary (http://www.igboenglish.com/igbo-nigerian-words-e.php), ‘enu ụwa’ means ‘whole world’.  ‘Ebuka’ is not listed though, so I am not really sure…

Anyway, this song is fantastic.  I felt very calm listening to this a few times earlier on. I love the fact that there was a musical genre called ‘Igbo Highlife’. I just wish I knew what they were singing about…

23rd May 2015: Doce – Bem Bom

Language – Portuguese

Translation – Well good (that’s what Google Translate says…)

I didn’t post last night as I was busy, and Eurovision was on…apologies!

Anyway, this one, because all the women are wearing outfits that Steve Strange might have worn to the Blitz club…

I also like this song by the same group.  Not Eurovision, but still cool.