La Différence

La Différence

by Salif KeitaSalif Keita


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Salif Keita turned 60 in 2009, which was also the year in which the veteran Malian singer recorded most of La Différence (although parts of the album were recorded in 2008). At that age, Keita had nothing left to prove; he had long since established himself as a major figure in Mali's Afro-pop scene. But his desire to excel remained, and he is in fine form throughout La Différence. In contrast to all the keyboards and synthesizers he used back in the 1980s, La Différence has a largely acoustic outlook -- not exclusively acoustic, but largely acoustic. Although some electric instruments are used (including electric guitar and Hammond B-3 organ), acoustic instruments are more prominent. And all those acoustic instruments -- which range from horns to oud (an Arabic lute) to upright bass -- do a lot to give this 49-minute CD its earthy, rootsy character. La Différence is not an album of traditional Malian music; this is modern Malian pop, with a strong Western influence and an obvious appreciation of American blues and R&B as well as French chanson (Mali, after all, is among the Francophone countries in sub-Saharan Africa). But the influence of traditional Malian music is also quite strong, and that East/West blend yields memorable results on haunting tracks such as "Gaffou," "Ekolo d'Amour," "San Ka Na," and "Samiga." Malian music -- both traditional Malian music and contemporary Malian pop -- has long been known for its haunting quality, which this recording most certainly has. La Différence falls shorts of essential, but even so, this excellent album paints a consistently appealing picture of Keita at 59 and 60.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/08/2010
Label: Emarcy
UPC: 0042288240273
catalogNumber: 001438602
Rank: 121114

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Salif Keita   Primary Artist,Guitar,Vocals
Kante Manfila   Guitar
Kélétigui Diabaté   Balafon
Souleymanne Doumbia   Percussion
Bill Frisell   Guitar
Souleymane Kouyate   N'Goni
Guy N'Sangue   Bass
Jannick Top   Bass
Patrick Warren   Piano
Jay Bellerose   Drums
Patrick Goraguer   Percussion,Piano
Djeli Moussa Kouyaté   Guitar
Vincent Segal   Cello
Diane Solo   Background Vocals
Mehdi Haddab   Oud
Jules "Bin Jami" Bikoko   Double Bass
Ibrahim Maalouf   Trumpet
Oliza   Background Vocals
Georges Yammine   Alto
Patrice Renson   Percussion,Piano,Drums,Electric Guitar,Hammond B3
Anis Hawi   Violin
Maimouna Keita   Background Vocals
Antoine Khalife   Violin
Mamadou Koné   Percussion,Calebasse
Diarra Keita   Background Vocals
Salimata Keita   Background Vocals
David Plitch   Double Bass
Seb Martel   Guitar
Julia Sarr   Background Vocals
Sebastian Quezada   Percussion,Vibes
Badier Tounkara   N'Goni
Angela Hounanian   Cello
Nassira Keita   Background Vocals
Nana Kouyaté   Background Vocals
Mona Smaan   Violin
Michel Kheirallah   Violin

Technical Credits

Salif Keita   Composer
Joe Henry   Producer
Kante Manfila   Arranger
Jean-Philippe Allard   Executive Producer
Stuart Bruce   Engineer
Ryan Freeland   Engineer
Ibrahim Maalouf   String Contractor
Patrice Renson   Arranger,Producer,Engineer,String Arrangements,String Conductor
Karim Sai   Engineer
Yann Ollivier   Executive Producer
Lucas Chauvière   Engineer

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