.zm” class=”f”>Zambia Daily Mail by Online Editor on 6/14/13
By KELVIN KACHINGWE
THE Alliance Francaise of Lusaka will next Saturday play host to Burkinabe musician Alif Naaba aka the Barefoot Prince, whose music is highly steeped in the musical traditions of Burkina Faso.
The show will be second involving a West African in as many months at the Alliance Francaise after it hosted Grammy Award for Best Urban/Alternative Performance Dobet Gnahoré of Ivory Coast.
While Dobet, widely considered one of contemporary African music’s most exciting talents, is known for her thrilling stage presence, Ali is said to offer dense yet danceable vibrant music that penetrates the body, mind and soul with his socially conscious lyrics, sung in Mooré and French, telling of the hardships that his country and continent face, while offering a hopeful and positive message for the future.
“My music comes from this special intimacy – the secret intimacy between a mother and her son. Today, my music is created from all of my experiences, from my Mossi roots, from my encounter with rhythms from far away. It has developed with percussion and Kora, along with the spice of melodic influences both Mossi and West African,” he says.
Alif is originally from Konkiis Tenga, a village in the centre-west region of Burkina Faso and was nurtured from infancy in the musical universe of his singing mother. However, he also dedicated himself to a life as a musician.
He appeared to the public in Burkina Faso with his first album Mongrel Glance, and in just a few years became an essential figure in the musical landscapes of Burkina Faso and Africa. His reputation was secured with the release of his second album FOO in 2005, which sold several thousand copies.
As a composer, Alif, whose genre is acoustic/fusion, has participated in the Sundance Institute’s East Africa initiative, collaborating with playwright Odile Gakire Katese (Rwanda) and choreographer Flora Théfaine (Togo). He made a spectacular American debut at globalFEST 2010, New York.