Sunday, February 8, 2009

CD Review: Kora, Kora, Kora....

Djibril Diabate
Terp Records

Djibril Diabate, from Mali, plays the kora, a 21-stringed gourd harp. On Hawa, an ode to his second mother, Djibril bridges the past with today using nothing but his hands and kora. In fact, no vocals or additional accompaniment is provided. This does two things: It allows the listener to be entranced by the lilting sounds of the kora strings, and it showcases a rich, traditional heritage and cultural staple for West Africans. Of course, the kora is easily accessible to everyone. The kora strings are a peaceful companion to any form of relaxation. Anyone with an interest in very good instrumental string music should find Hawa extremely palatable. ~ Matthew Forss

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