Artists A-Z

JUPITER & OKWESS INTERNATIONAL – “We’re sleeping on a mattress stuffed with dollars!”

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March 12, 2014
Jupiter and Okwess International at Carlisle Railway Station, September 2012. Photo by Andy Morgan

In the early years of that epic tribal conflict known as the cold war, an Irishman wrote a funny-sad piece of theatre, a kind of excruciating fairy tale about a pair of old tramps who sat around waiting for this guy called Godot. Except that Godot wasn’t a person of course; he was an...
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SIDI TOURE – Easy to listen to and easy to love…

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March 11, 2014
SIDI TOURE – Easy to listen to and easy to love…

When he was a child, Sidi Toure was told to go and hunt for bats in the Tomb of the Askia. On a good day, he and his harum scarum comrades could bring back ten or more, which made a tidy feast for the family. The monument wasn’t far from his home in the...
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PHOTO ESSAY: Catrin Finch & Seckou Keita

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January 22, 2014
Catrin Finch (L) & Seckou Keita (R)

12►   In July 2013, I asked Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita if I could steal some of their time for a photo session. Both were pretty busy at that time so I was grateful to them for indulging my whim. It was one of those beautiful and blisteringly hot summer days, and the...
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PHOTO ESSAY – Niger Music

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January 22, 2014
Bombino in his yard

123►   In February 2013 I traveled to Niamey in search of Niger music. I spent time and drank plenty of tea with some inspiring musicians and they gracefully allowed me to take photos of them. The honour was all mine Share This:
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FINDING THE ONE : ‘If your name is Keita, you’re still royalty’

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January 22, 2014
FINDING THE ONE - Front Cover

It was only after he’d started living in Europe and having kids of his own, that Seckou Keita started to wonder about his father. “I was in that mood,” he says, “I just wanted to find out.” He hadn’t seen him for about thirty years, but he was in touch with an uncle, his...
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FINDING THE ONE : ‘How the kora came to mankind’

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January 6, 2014
FINDING THE ONE - Front Cover

No one is one hundred precent sure of how or when the kora came into being. Strangely, the first person to ever mention it was a Scotsman by the name of Mungo Park, who wrote about it in his Travels In the Interior Districts of Africa, published in 1799.  Park was commissioned by Sir...
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Nigel Williamson’s review of ‘Music, Culture & Conflict in Mali’ – SONGLINES, September 2013

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September 3, 2013
Nigel Williamson’s review of ‘Music, Culture & Conflict in Mali’ – SONGLINES, September 2013

It was a small consolation, but one of the few positives to come out of the occupation of the northern two-thirds of Mali by armed jihadist groups in 2012 was the informed analysis of Andy Morgan. At the height of the crisis, Morgan seemed ubiquitous in the western media – on radio, television and...
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NEW BOOK: MUSIC, CULTURE & CONFLICT IN MALI

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May 16, 2013
<i> NEW BOOK: </i> MUSIC, CULTURE & CONFLICT IN MALI

My new book MUSIC, CULTURE & CONFLICT IN MALI takes an in-depth look at the crisis that overtook Mali in January 2012 and lead to a ten-month occupation of the northern two-thirds of the country by armed jihadi groups. The book examines the roots of those tumultuous events and their ef- fect on...
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Tisrawt: The epic tale of a theatre company from northern Mali

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May 16, 2013

BOOK EXTRACT: “Tisrawt is a microcosm of Touareg society,” Melissa explains. “That’s to say, it is a group of people who come from many different clans. Some are pro-MNLA. Some are pro Ansar ud-Dine. Some are pro-Mali. Others say that it’s all nonsense. And the aim is to understand each other, to live...
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REVIEW: CATRIN FINCH & SECKOU KEITA. The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Cardiff – 20/03/2013

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April 10, 2013
<i>REVIEW:</i> CATRIN FINCH & SECKOU KEITA. The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Cardiff – 20/03/2013

This was only a first taste but it was already golden, despite occasional rawness and hesitation, easily forgiven. With albums to be made, tours to be done and an inevitable maturing yet to come, the marriage of harp and kora seems blessed to be long, warm and fruitful.
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