Ballaké Sissoko et Vincent Segal

The very first time I heard the magnificent musical dialogue between Ballaké Sissoko and Vincent Segal  – I was blown away by the beautiful mating of sounds between the kora and cello.

Here’s what Songlines says about the latest recording from this unique artist collaboration:

Ballaké Sissoko is one of Mali’s great kora players and Vincent Segal is a French cellist and producer of remarkable refinement. Their debut, Chamber Music, was one of Jo Frost’s picks of 2010 and this is just as good – perhaps better as the duo have performed together so much they seem to respond to each other instinctively. The contrast of plucked and bowed strings is much of the magic, although Segal is frequently playing pizzicato or creating percussive or flute-like sounds on his cello. The title comes from the fact that much of the album was atmospherically recorded at nighttime on Sissoko’s rooftop in Bamako. SB

Listen via Spotify

Thomas Fersen on Thé ou Café: “Un coup de queue de vache”

I love this description of Thomas Fersen, a French singer-songwriter whom I’ve long admired. “Juste un merveilleux poète qui allume des bougies d’anniversaire dans les yeux de qui l’entend”  [Translated] “Fersen is a simply wonderful poet who lights birthday candles in the eyes of those who hear him.”

Here is Fersen performing on on Thé ou Café

And his interview from the same program

 

For the ukelele players, here’s a nice video showing the chords  from Fersen’s most famous tune, “Louise” I’m going to attempt this on my own uke and perhaps post later!

ZAZ Announces Headlining Performance at New York’s Town Hall

The #1 French singer in the world, ZAZ, announces a headlining performance at New York’s legendary Town Hall on April 22, 2019.

Zaz recently announced a new studio album, Effet Miroir [translation: Mirror Effect], comprised entirely of original songs. Combining elements of chanson, South American guitars, pop, salsa and rock, Effet Miroir is an album of hope that is testament to the beliefs of ZAZ, an internationally celebrated artist.

She also recently premiered the album’s first single, “Qué vendrá [translation: “Whatever Happens”] which is sung in both French and Spanish, and is about taking life as it comes and having no regrets. In ZAZ’s words: “To me this song is like a walk on the paths of life. The title echoes those last eight years I’ve spent on the road performing around the world, reminding me of all those encounters and learnings that ensued.”

On Effet Miroir, ZAZ hopes listeners can find and recognize themselves: “To accept all our facets with their paradoxes is for me, a way to unite the polarities of our being” ZAZ says. The album serves as an illustration of several faces and genres, just like the diversity of humanity that she had the opportunity to observe and appreciate for several years on the road, in concert or elsewhere.”

ZAZ (born Isabelle Geffroy) has been compared to the likes of Edith Piaf, Yves Montand and Ella Fitzgerald and her signature voice is celebrated all over the world – from South America to Japan, Germany to Eastern Europe, Russia to Mexico and Spain to Canada to name a few. Moving from Bordeaux to Paris as a teen, she set out to seize what would prove a unique destiny. Since the start of her career in 2010 with the seminal hit “Je veux,” ZAZ has won a multitude of awards including French and German Grammys, and has sold in excess of four million records internationally, with Gold status or higher in twelve countries. She has performed 500 shows across five continents, relentlessly proving that music transcends borders. An artist of global resonance, her last album Paris saw her collaborate with the likes of Quincy Jones, Charles Aznavour and Pablo Alborán. Quincy Jones has noted “[ZAZ] has real blues roots in her voice that you’d swear came straight out of the ghetto!” In 2011, ZAZ joined the Les Enfoirés charity ensemble, and has created the project Zazimut to develop and promote projects for a society more respectful of life in all its forms

Source: ZAZ Announces Headlining Performance at New York’s Town Hall