‘Yamoré’ – Salif Keita with Cesária Évora, music video

Powerful, moving, sultry and poignant. Song about love and life by two African greats… wow… I love it. Magic!

Salif Keita with Cesária Évora, Song: Yamoré, Album: Moffou (2002), Recorded at Les Studios De La Seine, Paris, France between July 15 & December 14, 2001. Label: Decca. ‘Moffou’ was nominated for the 2003 Grammy Awards for Best World Music Album.

 Kwanzaa Glow ©Kit Tossmann Louisville, KY

Kwanzaa, founded in 1966 by Dr Maulana Karenga is held December 26th thru January 1st.  It is an African American celebration of family, community, commerce, responsibility,  and self-improvement. Kwanzaa is not religious or political, nor a replacement for Christmas; rather it honors roots and culture. It is celebrated by more then 18 million people worldwide.

The word Kwanzaa means, ‘first fruits of the harvest’ in Kiswahili (an African language). The celebration is based on Nguzo Saba (seven guiding principles) which are: Umoja (Unity), Kujichagulia (Self-Determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity) and Imani (Faith).  On December 31st the community cooporative Kwanzaa Karamu or Feast is held. To learn more visit tike.com     

‘The Black Candle’ is a movie about Kwanzaa. In the movie it says,

Kwanzaa means access to your soul, to your people.

The beautiful, striking image above right of the Kwanzaa candles is a quilt by Kit Tossmann of Louisville, KY. It is featured in the 2007 Sacred Threads Gallery.

Happy Kwanzaa! Have a wonderful celebration.

 

Salif Keita Salif Keita born August 25, 1949 in Djoliba, Mali, Africa is a singer and songwriter. He is considered the Golden voice of Africa. He began his career in 1967 in the government sponsored Super Rail Band de Bamako. Then joined the group, Les Ambassadeurs in 1973 and fled Mali in the mid 70s because of political unrest. The name was changed to Les Ambassadeurs Internationales and they gained international acclaim. In 1977 Keita received a National Order award. He moved to Paris for a while then back to Mali in 2000 where he was inspired to create Moffou. You can learn more about Salif Keita at his official site at universalmusic.fr.

Cesária Évora Cesária Évora born August 27, 1941 in Mindelo, São Vicente Island, Cape Verde is a singer. Her nickname is the ‘barefoot diva’ because she prefers performing without shoes. She is known internationally for morna (music and dance from Cape Verde) songs of sadness, sorrow and yearning. She met Eduardo (a sailor) at 16, who taught her the traditional Cape Verdean music coladeiras and mornas.  She recorded her first album in Paris called La Diva Aux Pieds Nus (The Barefoot Diva) (1988). ‘Sodade‘ was her first international hit single. At age 47 she became an international star with the release of her album Perfumado. You can read more about her at cesaria-evora.com.

~Bonnee Klein Gilligan

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