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Bassekou Kouyate

From his early days in Bamako when he was playing in a trio together with Toumani Diabate and Keletigui Diabate till today where he is pursuing his own career, Bassekou has transformed the traditional music of the ngoni into the modern world of today. With his band ngoni ba he has created a new lineup as a quartet with a band's style of playing. The ngonis they play are still acoustic as in the old days, but Bassekou invented a bass ngoni even lower in pitch than the ngoni ba (low ngoni), and added extra strings to make their instruments harmonically more flexible. In the process Bassekou opened up the magic of an age-old music that he and his band have been playing for their entire lives, to people all over the world.

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