Don't know if you would include Turkey in your area of interest, but I have been enjoying Mercan Dede lately, especially 800 and the second disc of Sufi Traveler.
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I'm sure everyone else has been listening to him for a very long time but he was new to me and I've lately been spending a lot of time with the music of Hamza El Din, the Nubian oud player.
It's the most interesting mix of unaffected, intuitive musicality and sophistication I've run across in a long time. His album "A Wish" is the most accessible I have but all the others are wonderful, too.
I play Anouar Brahem a lot, as well. Definitely a modern mix of North African and European influences but good listening.
Quadro Nuevo did two CDs with Turkish and Middle Eastern flavorings when traveling there. They are 'Mocca Flor' and 'Antakya'. They run the gamut from whimsy to heartfelt and are outstanding musicians.
Also, check out anything by Anouar Brahem. Anything by him is a treat for the ears. His latest, 'The Astounding Eyes of Rita' is probably his most accessible.
I'll have to check out the aforementioned artists. Thanks for starting this thread.
Is Masekela north African, or south African? Anyway, I like him a a lot. Also, Dudu Pakwana. This makes me want to go through that stack of s. African jazz a friend gave me a while back.
Oh, yeah. Another one came to mind. Dollar Brand, who later became Abdullah Ibrahim.
Sorry if my geography is too far off topic. ;-)
Dan_ed, your geography is on topic, Hugh Mesekela is from South Africa; but his music is jazz with an African tilt.
Inna, Rabbi Abbou Kahlil is another Middle Eastern artist you might like. There are really a lot of very different flavors from that area. I suggest you sample and tell us what you like best. Since there are a number of people here who listen to what you want to hear, after you narrow this broad river; we can be of more help.
Yeah, I expect to have fun. Thank you for the suggestions. I guess, I heard none of this. I was also simply interested in other people's tastes. And in another thread I asked about exotic unusual music and got many responses.
Coincidence or not, my damn CD player broke yesterday. It's a ten year old CEC belt drive and it looks like only a belt; I hope.
Another great place for sampling is [url]http://www.grooveshark.com[/url]. They don't have everything but you'll be astonished at what is available for listening - complete songs, not just samples as on emusic or amazon. I just did a search for Cheb Khaled, whom I've never heard of, and there are three complete albums available. I'm not sure how it's legal or how long it will last so take advantage of it while you can.
Some really fine suggestions here.
Abdel Gadir Salim and Abdel Aziz El Mubarak from Sudan are really good.
Not North African, but Gigi from Ethiopia is terrific. Her debut album from 2001 is my favorite of hers.
Check Amazon to listen to samples.
I've been listening to African music for many years and there is still so much I have not heard. Some of the first music from there I heard was Osibisa, back when I was in college...
RX8man, I really like the Cheb Khaled & Safy Boutella Kutche album. I've had it for a long time.... on vinyl!
Yep, I owned the first two Osibisa Lps. And don't discount Paul Simon's Graceland (only LP I can stand of his ;-)).
Here are some more S. African artists I enjoy. These all have labels from record stores in S. Africa. Kind of neat.
Chris McGregor's Brotherhood of Breath, Country Cooking and Procession
Sipho Mabuse, Chant of the Marching
Winston Mankunku, Jika
and this on really grabs me
Chris McGregor, Louis Moholo, and Dudu Pukwana, Blue Notes for Johnny
Really good stuff. Anyone have a top ten, top five, or favorite African recordings list? I'll list some in addition to a few I named above:
Senegal: Baaba Maal & Mansour Seck - Djam Leelii - a must have.
Eqypt: Compilation - Yalla! Hitlist Eqypt
Mali: Nahawa Doumbia - Didadi
Tanzania: Remmy Ongala - Songs for the Poor Man
Nigeria: Fela - a few of his singles
- Upside Down
- Just Like That
S. Africa: Mahlathini & The Mahotella Queens - Paris-Soweto
Benin: Angelique Kidjo - Logozo
Senegal: Orchetra Baobab - Pirate's Choice
S. Africa: Compilation - The Indestructable Beat of Soweto
This is cheating since they are from Spain, but North African influenced:
Radio Tarifa - Rumba Argelina & also Fiebre, their live album.
Lots of very good compilations on the Rough Trade label.
Afropop Worldwide is a also a great resource: http://www.afropop.org/