Fatoumata Diawara is a Malian musician and actress born in Ivory Coast. She was sent back to Mali as a teenager to be raised by her aunt in her own culture. After graduating in Bamako, she moved to Paris to pursue acting. When she returned to Mali for a film role as a young actress, she had to leave the country to avoid being coerced into marriage by her family. She lives in France and has received several Grammy nominations, including one for Fenfo, the album that N’terini comes from. I love her vocals and her impressive range, and I love the obvious joy she takes in playing guitar. She combines traditional southern Malian Wassoulou song elements with international influences, creating something very exciting.
In modern popular music it is refreshing to find voices (and artists) that have not been reduced to stereotypes and “blandified” musically by the market. The realm of “world music” has many such artists, but it can be difficult to find a source to get in touch with what is vibrant and vital. Colors is a wonderful series, I suggest subscribing to them on Youtube.
Translated from Bamako: