Bi Kidude - Zanzibara 4
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Bi Kidude
Zanzibara 4
Buda Musique (

Buda's latest series, Zanzibara, continues with this marvelous set of recent recordings by Fatima binti Baraka, known professionally as Bi Kidude and dubbed by the label as "the diva of Zanzibari music." While her exact age is unknown, she has been singing and recording since the 1920s in a number of contexts both traditional and popular. These recordings, made between 1988 and 2005 (most recently by Jahazi Music, with some from the Globestyle recordings from the late 1980s) show an artist possibly past her prime technically, her voice a bit thin compared to much older works on record. But her performances are wonderful, her age adding nuances, her deep history informing each inflection. She is accompanied by a taarab style orchestra of drums, ud, qanun and violins, and on some of the recordings adding accordion, keyboards and such, and always a divine choir of voices, joining her in unison or urging her on in call and response. The results are completely satisfying, as these recordings chart her near 30 year "revival" as an artist in the west and reinforcing her status as a legend at home. Good liner notes in French and English offer insight into her history, as well as translations of the lyrics. - CF

CD available from cdroots

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CD available from cdroots


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