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Rich, textured guitars complement her native Bambara vocals and bring a contemporary feel to her traditional Malian sound.
There’s sorrow, longing, worry, sympathy and determination in Ms. Diawara’s voice.
—New York Times
She may be one of the most outstanding voices in Afropop, Afrofolk, and Afrofuturism, but Malian singer Fatoumata Diawara remains unclassifiable. Operating somewhere between tradition and modernity, guitar in hand, she brings Wasulu rhythms and West African vocal techniques to meet contemporary sounds. One of Africa’s leading voices, Diawara never ceases to surprise.
“Nsera,” the first track from her forthcoming album, was co-written and co-produced by Damon Albarn, one of the central figures of British pop music and an artist with a long history of fusion and collaboration with African musicians. Albarn’s vocals and keyboards infuse a touch of melancholy and modernity into the song’s Mandinka sound, giving rise to a word Diawara invented: “Londonko,” an imagined continent bringing Europe and Africa together.
Producer’s Circle member Tom G.