Mamadou Diabate’s Percussion Mania
Kanuya (Extraplatte EX920-2, 2011)
Kanuya (friendship, esteem and respect) is a thrilling album of modern West African centered around the balafon. The Mamadou Diabate in this case if the balafon maestro from Burkina Faso, not the kora player from Mali.
Mamadou Diabate puts a fabulous live show and this album is just as good. Most of the album features the core band: Mamadou Diabate on balafon, jembe, lunga, dundun, and vocals; Abdoulaye Dembele on dunduns, ngoni; Seydou Diabate on balafon; Yacouba Konate on balafon, Madou Kote (from Farafina) on jembe, Zakaria Kone on jembe and kora; and Karim Sanou on jembe, calabash, vocal.
Kanuya makes the percussion album even more exciting with a large number of guests, including Studio Percussion Graz and several Austrian and Latin American musicians who add jazz, Afro-Cuban and even Austrian popular music (in the form of a tuba) to parts of the album. “On this CD I present my most beautiful experiences and musical discoveries in the past few years,” says Mamadou Diabate.
The CD booklet in English, German and French contains fascinating details about the various musical pieces. Korolenko is perhaps the most interesting. It tells the origin of the balafon, which was a gift from the bush spirits.
The album ends with an outstanding percussion fest bringing together balafons, vibraphone, marimba, xylophone and drums.
Mamadou Diabate`s Percussion Mania has put together a superb percussion experience that combines the best of traditional music from West Africa with modern elements and world music influences.
Author: Angel Romero
Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. He was also the executive producer of the first Latino feature film made in North Carolina titled “Los sueños de Angélica.”.