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Jali Musa Jawara

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Biography

The half-brother of influential kora player Mory Kante and the cousin of guitarist Kante Manfila, Jali Musa Jawara (now known as Djeli Moussa Diawara) has expanded upon his family's musical legacy. A former member of his brother's band, Jawara has demonstrated his own music vision with several groundbreaking albums. While the traditional music of West Africa remains the foundation of his sound, Jawara has increasingly incorporated elements of electronic music, pop, jazz and hip hop. Jawara's debut album, Flamenkora, recorded solo on kora, guitar, percussion and vocals, was a showcase of his diverse skills. Jawara's masterpiece remains his 1983 album, Fote Mogobon. Rated A- in Robert Christgau's Consumer Guide, the album was praised by music historian Charlie Gillett as having "achieved the status of a classic". The album has been subsequently re-issued as Yaismika on the Hannibal label and Direct From West Africa on the Go! Disc label. A Native of Mali, Jawara resides in Abidjian, where his music is less subject to governmental censorship. ~ Craig Harris
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