The Rough Guide to African Blues

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Chris Nickson
It is common knowledge that the origin of the blues lies in West Africa, and that it was carried to America by slaves. The Rough Guide to African Blues explores the blues in its native setting, as it were, in mostly acoustic settings, although the vintage sounds of Ayaléw Mèsfin & Black Lion Band from Ethiopia add a big-band touch (whether they really qualify as blues is perhaps debatable). One of the most authentic-sounding pieces combines American Corey Harris with the late Malian guitar legend Ali Farka Touré (who was a fan of John Lee Hooker). But Afel Bocoum, Boubacar Traoré, and Nuru Kane all get to the heart of the blues, while Mariem Hassan and Etran Finatawa ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Chris Nickson
It is common knowledge that the origin of the blues lies in West Africa, and that it was carried to America by slaves. The Rough Guide to African Blues explores the blues in its native setting, as it were, in mostly acoustic settings, although the vintage sounds of Ayaléw Mèsfin & Black Lion Band from Ethiopia add a big-band touch (whether they really qualify as blues is perhaps debatable). One of the most authentic-sounding pieces combines American Corey Harris with the late Malian guitar legend Ali Farka Touré (who was a fan of John Lee Hooker). But Afel Bocoum, Boubacar Traoré, and Nuru Kane all get to the heart of the blues, while Mariem Hassan and Etran Finatawa bring more electricity, somewhat closer to the music of Tinariwen, the hottest thing in desert blues, who are surprisingly not represented here. Bob Brozman teams with Djeli Moussa Diawara for an interesting African take on a Skip James song, combining guitar with the kora harp very successfully. Whether Sudan's Rasha falls into the equation is also dubious -- there's more than a touch of Sade in her sound, but Daby Balde and Baaba Maal bring it all back home in excellent fashion. So what to make of this compilation? Like the curate's egg, it's good in parts, a sampling of African blues, but also a bit beyond. It would have been good to have had Ali Farka Touré alone, and this isn't as complete as it might have been; still, it forms a more than reasonable introduction.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/8/2007
  • Label: World Music Network
  • UPC: 605633118629
  • Catalog Number: 1186

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 La Tumchi Anni - Mariem Hassan (4:48)
  2. 2 Goree - Nuru Kane (5:08)
  3. 3 Special Rider Blues - Corey Harris (4:55)
  4. 4 Mariama Kaba - Boubacar Traoré (5:37)
  5. 5 Mogo Ti Diya Bee Ya - Oumou Sangare (4:10)
  6. 6 Iriarer - Etran Finatawa (4:58)
  7. 7 Jaman Moro - Afel Bocoum (4:17)
  8. 8 Kele Mandi - Rokia Traoré (4:11)
  9. 9 Feqer Aydelem Wey - Ayaléw Mèsfin & Black Lion Band (4:09)
  10. 10 Sigui - Djali Madi Tounkara (5:04)
  11. 11 Maloyan Devil - Djeli Moussa Diawara (6:00)
  12. 12 Azara Alhai - Rasha (6:30)
  13. 13 Waino Blues - Daby Balde (4:21)
  14. 14 Bibbe Leydy - Mansour Seck (8:59)
  15. 15 [CD-Rom Track]
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Phil Stanton Interviewee
Technical Credits
Skip James Composer
Baaba Maal Composer
Bob Brozman Composer
Oumou Sangare Composer
Djeli Moussa Diawara Composer
Afel Bocoum Composer
Lawrence Cedar Mastering
Mansour Seck Composer
Djali Madi Tounkara Composer
Boubacar Traoré Arranger
Traditional Composer
Peter Dyer Concept
Daby Balde Composer
Nuru Kane Composer
Mariem Hassan Composer
Marisa Lassman Liner Notes
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