[ BMG / ADA / 2 LP ]
Release Date: Tuesday 29 March 1994
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This remarkable album has Touré singing in 11 languages, playing acoustic and electric guitar, six-string banjo, njarka, and percussion instruments.
"Ali Farka Touré was a true original. An exceptional guitarist, he transposed the traditional music of his native north Mali and single handedly brought the style known as desert blues to an international audience.
Touré was born in 1939, and by the mid-'60s had mastered many instruments including guitar, njarka (a single-string African fiddle), ngoni (four-stringed lute) and the Peul bamboo flute. During the 1970s he played regularly on Radio Mali, blending his established style with acoustic blues. He released relatively few recordings over the next two decades but performed regularly and gained great respect from musicians and audiences alike.
In 1990, Touré withdrew from his musical career to grow rice on his farm, but was coaxed back to the studio in 1994 for 'Talking Timbuktu'. Produced by and featuring Ry Cooder, this remarkable album has Toure singing in 11 languages, playing acoustic and electric guitar, six-string banjo, njarka, and percussion instruments. 'Talking Timbuktu' also boasted the talents of jazz bassist John Patitucci, drummer Jim Keltner and guitarist Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown.
It became his most popular and highly rated album, earning him a Grammy for "Best World Music Album", proving that traditional "real" music could be embraced by a wide audience. However, Toure again became reclusive and didn't release anything until 'Niafunke' in 1999.
In February 2006 he won his second Grammy award for the brilliant 'In The Heart Of The Moon', in collaboration with Toumani Diabate. Touré had been working on his final solo album while suffering from cancer, but sadly he died in Mali on March 7th 2006. Ali Farka Touré was a giant of African music and will be missed by many people throughout the world." - GEOFF (11th March 2006)
Lasidan (Alternative take)