Mali’s artists and revelers set alight the country’s capital Bamako, when the city hosted its first music Festival since the 2012 political crisis, with hopes to revive and promote that country’s culture.
Music lovers treated themselves to a fix of their musical goodness in the first edition of the Acoustic Bamako , held between January 27-30, and embracing a wide variety of musical tastes – historical, traditional and modern.
Lined up were fine stacks of concerts featuring Malian and international artists stretched across the four days of the carnival. Among them were British musician Damon Albarn, local boy band Songhoy Blues and founder of the festival Toumani Diabaté.
It's very important for me, for us to move Malian culture forward . You see, music is the heart of Mali's culture.
“It’s very important for me, for us to move Malian culture forward . You see, music is the heart of Mali’s culture… It is important that we defend our culture, we are trying to move with of course our friends who were willing to make the move , it is only the beginning and will continue to do so,” said Diabaté.
“Playing in Bamako comforts us, it gives us hope, “ Aliou Toure, lead singer of Songhoy Blues said. “You know Mali, can do nothing without culture, without his music, “ he added
The artists said they were planning on turning the festival into an annual event, adding that it served as cultural exchange forum and the opportunity to showcase the unique treasure of Mali and its diverse musical traditions.
Beyond the weekend’s festivities, a training program will be initiated in the field of music and creative industries to strengthen the capacity of youth in Mali..