Monday, March 05, 2007

Interview with Amadou Bagayoko

They are best known back home as “the blind couple of Mali.” Here they are known by their first names. Amadou Bagayoko, 52, and Mariam Doumbia, 48, met in 1974 in the orchestra of Mali’s Institute for the Young Blind. They began touring in 1978 with their band, Eclipse, and in 1980 they were married. Ten albums later, as Amadou & Mariam, they are renowned in world music circles. Amadou, who plays electric guitar and is a fan of Led Zeppelin, calls their music Afro-rock. On 2005’s “Dimanche á Bamako” (Nonesuch), they teamed with the Franco-Spanish producer Manu Chao, the patron saint of found sounds, and the result won them a Victoire, the French equivalent of a Grammy. They sing in French and Bambara, Mali’s national language, and write their songs together, after a fashion: He’s an early bird, she’s a night owl. Via translator, Amadou spoke recently by phone from Bamako, the capital of Mali, with Winter Miller about the predominantly African music he’s listening to now.
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1 comment:

girafes1 said...

More about their country on