Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Amadou & Mariam|
Sou Ni Tile
Genres: World Music, Pop
Originally released in 1998, Amadou and Mariam's debut recording took the blind couple's pentatonic (built upon five tone scales) Malian R & B around the world. As neither was born into the Jeli (praise-singing hereditary ... more »
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Originally released in 1998, Amadou and Mariam's debut recording took the blind couple's pentatonic (built upon five tone scales) Malian R & B around the world. As neither was born into the Jeli (praise-singing hereditary musician) caste, they were free from the outset to incorporate non-traditional musical influences and write topical lyrics. The first track, "Je Pense a Toi (I Think Of You)," got a special nod from radio programmers. On it, Amadou's wily, funky guitar and rough-shod Bambara vocals were supported by rustic fiddles, an Arabic flute, Fender Rhodes and Hammond organs plus swaggering brass and growling bass lines, with Mariam's soulfully feminine voice shadowing his like a guardian angel. But when she emerged to sing lead, as on "Mouna," her sinuous, Islamic-tinged singing could stand comparison with the greatest West African stars. The duo?s later output is far more polished and the Manu Chao-produced Dimanche a Bamako (Sunday In Bamako -- 2005) is undeniably a personal best. But their first album showcased two artists at the apex of a breakthrough and no collection of their works can be considered complete without it. --Christina Roden
Perhaps their best album
Mainoo Smith | london United Kingdom | 03/30/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"like many other artists, amadou and mariam's debut album is their best (so far). the music is wildly eclectic calling on everything from rock guitar (by which i mean if i played you the solo you would not hesitate to identify it as classic rock) to indian music (ditto), to horn playing in the finest big band tradition. amadou's guitar style is rocking but clean - also wildly eclectic. it is mariam's voice that grounds this album in Mali. you know when you listen to an album and wonder whether it may not perhaps be your favorite cd of all time. this one is up there with the best. don't hesitate - whatever your musical leanings. buy now. or buy later - this one will keep!"
Came to us through the ether
Eric Pitt | New York, NY United States | 06/20/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"We first heard "je pense a toi" in halifax on canadian public radio in 1998 and were completely taken with the haunting melancholic beauty of this couple's music. We love this album, but it's still the first track that lingers in my memory, the simple authenticity of the sentiment, the blend of blues, french, and a distinctly middle eastern intonation. They say that those deprived of one sense are acutely sensitive in the others..."
Glenn Barker | San Francisco | 01/15/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A few years ago, someone gave me a compilation CD called From Mali To Memphis. I apparently listed to it once, and took no particular note of it. Then, later on down the line, I went back to it to re-investigate. The first track, Mon Amour, Ma Cherie, by Amadou & Mariam, tore my head off so authoritatively that I played it nine times in a row. And now, Amadou & Mariam are just about my favorite band in the world.
This CD, their first with a full band, is a miracle of great music that transcends traditional style, and marries various forms in ways most all "world music" artists can only dream of.
A flute here, hammond organ there, tabla, violin, trumpet, and influences ranging from Middle-Eastern to James Brown to reggae
make for a unique and exquisite sound. From ballads to
genuine hard rock, it never misses a beat.
In the middle of it all is Amadou Bagayoko. His leathery voice is one of the most commanding ever to be issued from an African recording. His guitar playing, while modest in the solo department, sets up many of the songs with scintillating motifs.
Mariam Doumbia, his soul-mate, also provides vocals that create a soft counter-point to Amadou's gritty singing.
I highly recommend that anyone beg, borrow, or steal a copy of this CD, and discover just how good West African music gets."