November 22, 2009

Balaké à Paris

The first Amadou Balaké album I heard was "A Paris - Djala Songo". I can't say I went wild. On the contrary, it took me quite a while to get over it.

In those days there were still loads of traces of the golden era of African orchestras. There was an unbridled optimism of the treasures still waiting to be unveiled. And Paris (i.e. the Parisian producers and recording studios) was seen by some as the neo-colonialiser, the corruptor of authentic African culture.

I suppose there was an element of truth in this.
Paris did set a standard when it came to the use of modern electronics in African music, and in doing so initiated a process which led to the end of the large horn sections, and therefore to the end of the great African orchestras.

But over time my negative view of this album has mellowed. I have learnt to listen less to the irritating arrangements & instrumentation, and more to Balaké.
And Balaké?
He is as always brilliant, consistently himself. If you are able to look through the electronics and canned choruses it is still the same Balaké as when he recorded for Club Voltaïque de Disques, or when he sang about the evil money can cause in "Wariko" on "Afro-Charanga" and on "Baya".

Sacodis LS-86


Anonymous said...

mi llave hay dos files corruptos......a2 y b3.....
tendrias la amabilidad de subirlos nuevamente...gracias

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for another Balake.
Kostas from Greece.

Anonymous said...

Just one note...The tracks A2 & B3
are not exist...Please take care of it ....and thank you again.

WrldServ said...

I have re-uploaded the file, tested the download and renewed the link.
Let's hope it stays okay this time.

There seems to be a general degradation going on with these providers...

Anonymous said...

Funny, I just ripped this Lp myself. One note, "Cissoko" on side B was redone by Colombia's Joe Arroyo as "Si so Gole." I'll download for the album art, yours may be better than what i shot. Thanks.