Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Amadou & Mariam: Welcome to Mali

"It took more than ten years to make their first record. Then, in 1994, [manager Marc-Antoine] Moreau 'discovered' Amadou and Mariam and changed their lives. He was in Senegal to visit one of his acts, the singer Ismael Lo, and decided to tack a loop through Mali and Ivory Coast on to the end of his trip. At one point he stayed in a bus station in Bamako for three days waiting for the bus to Abidjan to fill up. 'While I was there a guy came with a big box full of tapes. ... One said "The Blind Couple from Mali, Volume 1." The first track was called Everyone has their Own Problem.' ... A year later, back in Paris, a friend to whom he had played the tape found out that Amadou and Mariam were playing in an African restaurant. Moreau went and introduced himself. ... They have worked together ever since. The breakthrough came with the 2005 album Dimanche a Bamako, which sold more than half a million copies. The follow-up was partly produced by Damon Albarn, who has become a regular collaborator" (Ben Hoyle, "The Conversation," Times [London], 7/9/11).
View catalog record here!


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