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My Life
     

My Life

by Sia Tolno
 
Make no mistake: suffering does not have to result in great art. It can result in really lousy art. But it's also true that in the hands of a great artist, suffering can be simultaneously expressed and transcended, and Sierra Leonian singer Sia Tolno has achieved the delicate balance between self-expression and universal uplift that alone is capable of creating that

Overview

Make no mistake: suffering does not have to result in great art. It can result in really lousy art. But it's also true that in the hands of a great artist, suffering can be simultaneously expressed and transcended, and Sierra Leonian singer Sia Tolno has achieved the delicate balance between self-expression and universal uplift that alone is capable of creating that kind of magical result. Drawing on her experiences as a victim of abuse, economic privation, and exile, she has written a set of songs that depict her trials without flinching, but that focus on her joy at having emerged from them. Opening with the rhythmically complex and soaringly beautiful "Blamah Blamah," Tolno sets the stage for the rest of the album: her sweetly rough-edged voice will be answered by densely harmonized female backing vocals and supported by instrumental accompaniment that draws alternately on Congolese rumba rhythms, desert blues, and European dance patterns; the lyrics will alternate between Creole and standard English. At its best, the music is hypnotically funky ("Blamah Blamah," "Odju Watcha") or smokily sad ("Di Ya Leh," "Malaya") or jazzy ("Ayiboh") or even reggae-based (the lovely "Kongossa"). When not at its best it can get a bit tedious ("Polli Polli," which is way too long for a one-chord composition), but even when not at its best, Sia Tolno's music is consistently attractive.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/10/2012
Label:
Lusafrica France
UPC:
3567255626821
catalogNumber:
562682

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Sia Tolno   Primary Artist,Vocals,Background Vocals
François Bréant   Percussion,Accordion,Cymbals,Drums,Maracas,Hammond Organ,Triangle,Background Vocals,Kalimba,Bells,Balafon,Double Bass,Cabasa,Cuica,Shaker,Guiro,Udu
Nicolas Gueret   Saxophone
Guy N'Sangue   Bass Guitar
Mamady Mansarén   Flute
Roger Biwandu   Drums
Mamadou Camara   Guitar
Papa Kouyate   Conga
Maître Banda   Saxophone
Youssouf Condé   Balafon
Mohamed Kouyaté   Bass Guitar
Mabinté Camara   Background Vocals
Alice Kamanou   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

François Bréant   Arranger,Programming,Producer
Sia Tolno   Composer
José Da Silva   Producer
Stéphane Caisson   Engineer
Seydou Tanly   Engineer

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