Friday, June 24, 2016

Blues from Different Continents: Ali Farka Touré and Ry Cooder with "Lasidan"

The random song for today brings together two legends from very different places, but who have a common musical heritage nonetheless. Lasidan is by the great Malian guitarist and singer Ali Farka Touré and the American musician, songwriter, composer and producer Ry Cooder. Ali Farka Touré was a Malian singer, multi-instrumentalist and one of the most renowned African musicians. His music fits right into the intersection of traditional Malian music and North American blues. Known as the "African John Lee Hooker," he sang in several African languages. In 2004, he became mayor of a small town and spent his own money on improving infrastructure. He died in 2006 of bone cancer. Ry Cooder is an American producer and guitarist known for his slide guitar and his interest in roots music. He has collaborated with many musicians both from the US and abroad, and his albums have covered many different genres, including folk, blues, Tex-Mex, soul, gospel and rock among others. He also produced the worldwide hit album Buena Vista Social Club. Lasidan can be found on their Grammy-award winning collaboration Talking Timbuktu (1994).