Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Album Review: Diata Sya-Djekafo Paris Bamako

If you've never heard of Akwaaba, it's about time you have. They're a fair trade record label representing artists in several countries in West Africa. Their latest release, Djekafo Paris Bamako, features Diata Sya, a Malian hip-hop band that integrates traditional Malian instruments and sounds into their presentation. In the words of label founder and president Benjamin Lebrave, "They don't just play SAMPLES of more traditional music, they collaborate with top Malian musicians such as Cheik Tidiane Seck, and let them elaborate freely. I met them last year in Bamako, and could not understand why their last CD has been confined to Mali, despite tight and very creative beats, guests from all over West Africa, and even heavyweights from France such as Mokobé and Doudou Masta."

Akwaaba specializes in delivering contemporary African music to the rest of the world. The word Akwaaba means welcome in several W. African languages. All proceeds from music sold is split 50/50 with their artists. If you're interested in what's hot on the streets of Bamako, Mali, Dakar, Senegal, or Luanda, Angola, Akwaaba is your passport and guide. African hip-hop is a growing genre that's integrating influences from many different places and sources. Akwaaba is one of the only record labels in the world providing access to this amazing music, and they're the only one doing it on a fair trade basis.

All of their releases are available on Itunes. To download Diata Sya's latest release,
follow this link.

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