M’bemba - Salif Keita

EMI

Yesterday’s suspicions and an out of date caste system forced Salif Keita to leave Mali to forge a music career in Paris. Well, attitudes have slowly changed in his homeland and this year, the man known as the ‘African Caruso’ finally returned to Mali, where he’s built a studio and recorded an extraordinary new album called, ‘M’bemba’. He was born an albino, a sign of bad luck in Malian culture. He is also a descendant of the founder of the Mandingo Empire in West Africa and, according to Mali’s caste system that meant that being a musician was below his status. In the face of these obstacles, Salif moved to Paris to pursue his passion, and has risen to international fame because of his singular and emotionally-charged voice.On his new album M’Bemba, Salif asks for a pardon from the griots whose role it is in Malian society to make music. As a man of noble descent, he begs their forgiveness in appropriating their profession.