There used to be more musical couples in Mali, long before Amadou & Mariam. There was Awa Diarra & Siné Sangaré, but more succesful and locally very popular was Safoura Denou & Seny Sangaré.
If I am not mistaken, the two Sangaré's were brothers.
Both these couples had the same formula: the man played the ngoni and the woman sang. Seny Sangaré distinguished himself by also 'intervening' with some spoken word. This, in itself, is not uncommon in the traditional style griot music. But Seny seemed different, because his commentary often provoked reactions ranging from giggles to fits of hilarious laughter with Malian audiences.
I am told he is joking with his wife, calling her names like "chubby cheeks" and such....
I have no idea what happened to them, but judging from this wonderful video (from Malian television) from the mid-1980s it would be a shame if Safoura Denou & Seny Sangaré would fade away into oblivion.
If you like, I will post some of their cassettes later.
Oumou Sangare - 199x Live & 200x K7 only
2 days ago