Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté & Lassana Diabaté


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Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté with her pure vibrato voice, has been compared by some to the American gospel singer, Mahalia Jackson. She's the daughter of legendary singer Kassé Mady Diabaté and her songs are from Kela, a village in western Mali - famous for its music. The Kela tradition, unique to her and her family, ranges from lively work songs to poignant and soulful melodies that are performed while accompanying a newly wed bride to her husband's home, and powerful historical narratives that tell the story of pre-colonial leaders such as Almamy Samory Touré who took a last stand against colonial rule and was captured by the French in 1898.

Virtuoso balafon player, Lassana Diabaté, from a long line of famous players of the instrument at the source of tradition in Western Mali and in Guinea, is a habitué of major concert halls and festivals, and recordings. His recent recording successes have been with Symmetric Orchestra and with AfroCubism.

The two artists have played together recently in major Festivals in the UK, at prominent US universities and concert halls, in a project to rescue old styles with a creative and modern approach. Despite much having been forgotten or neglected, their repertoire represents the heart of a musical tradition that has stood the test of time.

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