Tag Archives: valiha

Artist Profiles: Sylvestre Randafison

Sylvestre Randafison

Valiha maestro Benjamin Sylvestre Randafison was born in Madafascar in 1928. In addition to playing and promoting the usea of the valiha, Sylvestre Randafison also made high quality bamboo valihas with different tunings.

Throughout the 1950s and 60s, Sylvestre Randafison and his trio, Ny Antsaly, toured extensively outside Madagascar.

In addition to his work as a musician and instrument maker, Sylvestre Randafison also worked as a folklorist for the Madagascan Ministry of Cultural Affairs, traveling throughout Madagascar to collect more than 1,000 pieces of traditional music.

Sylvestre Randafison died on July 12, 2003.

Discography:

Valiha De Madagascar Vol.1, with Jean-Baptiste Ramaronandrasana (Pied Rouge, 1987)
The Art Of Rakoto Frah & Randafison Sylvestre – Madagascar (JVC, 1989)
L’Art De La Valiha – The Art Of The Valiha ‎(Arion, 2000)

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Artist Profiles: Rakotozafy

Rakotozafy

Rakotozafy was born in 1933. He was one of the best valiha players in Madagasca. His version of the valiha featured a total of 24 strings in the two sets, each set tuned to a different scale.

Rakotozafy made his first recordings in the 1960s for DiscoMad, released as singles and 45 EPs.

British record label GlobeStylemade sa trip in 1985 and colected some of Rakotozafy’s recordings. The label released a compilation titled Valiha Malaza in 1988.

Rakotozafy died in 1974.

Discography:

Valiha Malaza – Famous Valiha (Globe Style, 1988)

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Artist Profiles: Mama Sana

Mama Sana

Singer-songwriter and valiha musician Mama Sana was born in 1900 in Madagascar. She was a charismatic artist, dressed in traditional clothing with coins braided into her hair. Sana earned national and international popularity throughout her career, thanks to her innovative valiha style and her mix of distinguished by her mix of traditional Tandroy and Sakalava musical styles.

Mama Sana recorded various solo albums before her death in 1997. Her music was sampled by French electronic band Deep Forest for their third album, Comparsa. After her death, Sana’s house was turned into a museum and a cultural association was founded in her honor to promote traditional music of the Sakalava and Tandroy people.

Discography:

The legendary Mama Sana (Shanachie, 1992)
Music from Madagascar (Shanachie, 1995)
Madagascar: Anthologie des voix. (MCM/Inedit, 1997)
Madagascar Musique des Sakalava Menabe, Hommage à Mama Sana (MCM/Inedit, 2000)

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Artist Profiles: Justin Vali

Justin Vali

Justin Vali was born in 1964. He is one of the best-known valiha (bamboo tube zither) players in Madagascar. He also plays other traditional instruments such as the marovany box zither.

Vali appeared on various compilations in the late 1980s. In 1995 he released Ny Marina (The Truth) on Real World Records. In 1999 he put out The Sunshine Within, a collaboration with Paddy Bush.

In 2008, Vali recorded with Eric Manana, Fenoamby, Régis Gizavo, and Dama Mahaleo, all leading Malagasy musicians under the name Malagasy All Stars.

Vali lives in Paris and performs regularly on the international world music festival circuit.

Discography:

Rambala (Silex, 1991)
The Truth – Ny Marina (Real World Records, 1995)
Valiha (Cinq Planètes, 2005)
Madagascar All Stars (Cinq Planètes, 2008)

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