Artist Profiles: Abdoulaye Diabate

Abdoulaye Diabate
Abdoulaye Diabate

Abdoulaye Diabate comes from the Segu region of Mali. He was born in 1952, son of Baba Diabate, traditional chief of the Diabate jelis of Segu, and of Assitan Dembele, one of the greatest Bambara singers.

At the age of eight he started singing in villages with his mother, all the while continuing his Koranic studies and attending French school. He eventually received a degree in accounting.

In 1975, at short notice, he replaced the singer of Koule Star of Koutiala, his adopted town (which he has never left), and so began a career that has produced several albums and led to his being named Best Malian Artist of 1994.

Abdoulaye Diabate’s style is an energetic mix of modern and traditional music, where you can find drums and electric guitars, but also traditional instruments such as bala and jembe.


Massadjourou (1988)

Kassikoun (Syllart 38765-2, 1989)

Namawou (Syllart SYL 83135, 1992)

Tabale (EMI Mali 83178, 1993)

Djiriyo (Stern’s STCD 1066, 1995)

Bende (Project Frikyiwa/PIAS)

Makan (Syllart SYLLAF 96173, 2000)

Samory (Cobalt 09354-2, 2002)

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for TelevisiĆ³n EspaƱola (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. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.


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