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Fatou

4.8 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

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Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Product details

  • Audio CD (19 Sept. 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: World Circuit
  • ASIN: B005BO2L9I
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,599 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
The autumn leaves are falling, you go to work in the dark and return in the dark and the winter chill seems poised to enter our lives. Why not therefore get a final blast of summer before the permafrost descends by purchasing this vibrant feast of Malian music from the brilliant Fatoumata Diawara who recently stole the show on Jools Holland. Hailing from Southern Mali and singing in her native Wassoulou language, Diawara determined to make it as an actress in Paris but found that the draw of music proved a far stronger primal urge. The loss to the Thespian profession is music lovers massive gain since "Fatou" is a stunning record full of colour, verve, rhythm and excitement. It is one of the best African music LPs you will hear but it is also much more than that. The swirling melodic guitars of this record combined with the multilayered vocals show a real soul/funk sensibility at work combined with lyrics which we are told pulse with the concerns of social justice not least denouncing arranged marriage and female circumcision. What some might see as a language barrier in terms of lyrical understanding actually adds to the sheer beauty of the record since it makes for an entrancing backdrop and the musical force of the songs carries all in their wake.

The laid-back funky opener "Kanou" is a fine start with its hypnotic vocal and pulsating bass interwoven with gentle acoustic guitar lines which dance around the song like a summer breeze. The second song in is "Sowa" which is irresistible and hugely commercial, indeed it is surprising that Western singers are resisting the temptation to draw inspiration from this deep well.
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Format: Audio CD
This debut album is truly delightful. Combining lovely melodies with strong, simple rhythms, delicate guitar-playing and striking vocals, Fatoumata Diawara marks herself out as a rising star of modern Malian singer-songwriters. There are serious messages to a number of her songs (the lyrics are translated in the extensive liner notes), including Bissa (arranged marriage) and Boloko (female circumcision), but there is just as much of the bright & playful side of Fatou on Bakonoba and her ode to love - Kanou. The album has been beautifully produced, as you would expect from World Circuit, and that allows Fatou & her songs to simply shine.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Joyful and reflective in equal measure, Fatou is a superb debut album by this hugely talented Paris-based Malian sensation. My album of the year for 2011, first impressions were confirmed when seeing her at London's Jazz Cafe. Fatoumata Diawara is simply superb - soulful vocals, delicate and intricate guitar playing, backed up by rythmic percussion - the album has everything. From the beautiful, reflective tracks, Wilile and Clandestin, to the catchy dance tracks, Bakonoba and Bissa (single from the album), this album has something for everyone who loves African music. Highly recommended
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By The Guardian TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 18 May 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This fine 2012 debut from Malian singer Fatoumata Diawara showcases her distinctive melodic voice singing her own songs in her native Bambara tongue with themes as serious as personal betrayal, the effect of wars in Africa, the plight of illegal African migrants in Europe, arranged marriage and female circumcision.

In addition to accompanying her own voice on simple acoustic guitar traditional western rock guitars, bass and drums are deployed alongside West African instruments like the kori, calabash and ngoni, so the result has a distinctive `world music' sound.

Most of the album was recorded at Livingston Studios in London and produced by Diawara and Nick Gold, and the quality of the mix is superb.

The album's main feature is Diawara's melodic voice and it has some beautiful, poignant moments. However it somehow lacks that indefinable quality (which for example Salif Keita has in spades) which really sets your hair on fire. It also needs to be said that at the by the end of the album the tracks are starting to sound very much the same, with little variation in dynamics. But there's no doubt about it: for a debut recording it's pretty impressive and knocks the spots off most `popular' music manufactured to feed the tastes of western audiences. Fatou is still young, an obviously talented natural singer and composer who seems - on the evidence of this collection - to have what it takes to develop into a significant force in world music. We should look forward to her follow-up album to see in which direction it grows.

The CD package is excellent with a 24-page booklet offering all the song lyrics in the original Bambara with translations in each case into French and English.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I first saw Fatoumata Diawara on Jools Hollands Later and immediately ordered the album.
I was not disappointed - it is a beautifully simple and calming album which whilst not too demanding of the listener has depth and longevity.
My 6 and 8 year old daughters love it too!
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This music plants the African landscape in your imagination and invites you to party in it. This is a lovely upbeat collection of exquisitely played guitar based songs.
She has a beautiful resonant voice with a tonal quality that matches her guitar, and with which she delivers strong melody embellished with intricate decoration - but with tasteful restraint.
I defy you to listen to it and not be humming the songs repeatedly afterwards.
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