Showing posts with label Ebrima Tata Jobateh. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ebrima Tata Jobateh. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Salam Sounds

Researching that last post has got me to pondering the ways in which the kora, the traditional 21-string harp-lute of West Africa, has been combined with more modern sounds. There are plenty of examples, from the musical fusions of Foday Musa Suso and Djeli Moussa Diawara to Toumani Diabate's collaborations with Taj Mahal and Björk, to, incredibly, Naughty By Nature's 1991 smash hit "O.P.P."

None of these attempts to update the classic sound, in my opinion, approach the pure polyphonic joy of Ebrima Tata Jobateh's cassette Waato, recorded with his group Salam (apparently members of his extended family) and released by Kerewan Sounds in Gambia in 1995.

Efforts to find out more about this mysterious artist didn't yield much save this observation by Nick Deen of Natari: ". . . Tata's solo style is extremely impressive and in fact leaves the older Paris-based kora players like
Mory Kante very much in the shade. Absolute magic all the way through." Of course, I wholeheartedly agree with Nick's assessment! Hear for yourself:

Tata & Salam Band - San-Chaba

Tata & Salam Band - Sabarla

Tata & Salam Band - Mali-Gambia

Tata & Salam Band - Boto Sanneh

Tata & Salam Band - Mariama Jallow

Tata & Salam Band - Kaira

Tata & Salam Band - Duwa

Tata & Salam Band - Alagie Danso

You can download Waato as a zipped file here. More new-fangled kora sounds to follow.