The art and culture of Mali is so diverse, and some of its music has played a large role in the introduction of African music into the large and expanding genre of world music.
Mansa Sissoko is one of the new generation of singer-songwriters from Mali, West Africa. A griot by birth, Sissoko weaves his music around the sound of traditional instruments and lyrics which encourage people in their day-to-day life. He is unique in that he sings and accompanies himself on the kora, a 21-stringed harp.
Sissoko will be joined onstage by bala player Kassoum Diamoutene. Diamoutene was born in a village tucked in the south of Mali, where the most popular and pre-dominant traditional musical instrument is the bala (xylophone). Diamoutene has played the bala from the age of five. He also learned to play other traditional instruments such as the bara and ngoni.
Guest appearance by Mutamba Rainos and Pasi Gunguwo, performing mbira songs from Zimbabwe.
Mutamba Rainos and Pasi Gunguwo draw inspiration from Zezuru music. Most of the songs have been passed on by many generations through oral means. Mutamba and Pasi have been playing music on the streets, community gatherings, parks, farmers markets around the city of Toronto and surrounding areas.
Guest DJ Apollo will be spinning from his vast collection of popular African hits.
This is the third event of the World Concert Series, now in its third year.
The series features a diverse lineup of performers with a strong focus on African music.
Each event takes place on the first Friday of each month from 7 – 10 pm.,
at the Gladstone Hotel located at 1214 Queen St. West, Toronto, is all-ages and free!
Batuki Music Society gratefully acknowledges the support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Gladstone Hotel.
Mansa Sissoko in Ottawa, May 2009
Mansa Sissoko with Zal Idrissa Sissokho on koras, and Lasso, fula flute – Montréal, July 2010