Today is unlike any other day. I am in Mali talking to families who fled the violence in the latest armed conflict to rock the West African region. In recent weeks, I have watched Mali grab headlines as government and French troops launch a military campaign against armed opposition groups.
Not only has this strangely-shaped, landlocked West African country produced more international musicians than any other nation on the continent, but Malian music is incredibly diverse.
Drought in the Sahel region of West Africa is fast becoming a humanitarian crisis; Henry Makiwa travels to Burkina Faso to see how the lack of rain and an influx of refugees have affected the country.
The kora, a 21-stringed harp, is one of West Africa’s – and Mali’s especially – finest cultural exports. The instrument is at the heart of the region’s tradition of hereditary court musicians or praise singers, known as griots, whose knowledge has been passed down through dozens of generations by word of mouth. The history of [...]
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