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mory kante

 

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Mory Kante is a remarkable musician with a great many achievments in Africa and globally. He has won numerous awards, recorded many highly successful international albums and, in October 2001, was appointed F.A.O. ambassador to help in the mission to fight hunger and reduce poverty worldwide.

Mory Kanté (born 29 March 1950, Kissidougou, Guinea) is a vocalist and player of the kora harp. He was born into one of Guinea's best known families of griot (hereditary) musicians. After being brought up in the Mandinka griot tradition in Guinea, he was sent to Mali at the age of seven years – where he learned to play the kora, as well as important voice traditions, some of which are necessary to become a griot.

In 1971 Kanté became a member of the Rail Band, in which Salif Keïta was a singer. Keïta left the band in 1973, leaving Kanté as the singer. Kanté is best known internationally for his 1987 hit song "Yé ké yé ké", which was one of Africa's best-ever selling hits as well as being a European Number One in 1988, making it the first ever African single to sell over one million copies.

Mory Kanté is a legend—a traditional West African musician who rose to regional stardom in the ‘70s, rocked the world pop charts from his adopted home in Paris in the ‘80s, rode the wave of globalized African music in the ‘90s, and returned home to his native Guinea in the 2000s to become a force for economic development and an inspirational voice for a new generation of Africans.

Kanté’s wise council is rooted in years of supporting UN agricultural initiatives, aiding refugees, saving threatened forests, and seeking to end the practice of female genital mutilation. His recent CD La Guinéenne features a full-throated praise song to the women of the world, whose sacrifice, dedication, and centrality to human progress is too often met with oppression and neglect. The CD is a musical tour de force from a pioneer whose work has helped define the musical language of post-independence Africa, and who remains one of the most forceful bandleaders and compelling vocalists in African music today.

With La Guinéenne, Mory Kanté pays a tribute to Women, a full-throated praise song to the women of the world, whose sacrifice, dedication, and centrality to human progress is too often met with oppression and neglect. La Guinéenne is also a musical tour de force from a pioneer whose work has helped define the musical language of post-independence Africa, and who remains one of the most forceful bandleaders and compelling vocalists in African music today.

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