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Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2015 10:53 am
by Adam Blake
Any other Forumistas going to this?

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2015 11:29 am
by Jamie Renton
I can't make this one, but saw him at Ronnie Scotts last time he was over and was most impressed.

I'd be very interested to hear what you make of it Adam

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2015 12:19 pm
by Adam Blake
I'm very much looking forward to it. He's always been my favourite.

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 1:08 am
by Adam Blake
Little review that I posted on F***book:

Boubacar Traore gave a masterful performance at Rich Mix this evening. Armed with the 5 notes of the Aolian Pentatonic minor scale (A - C - D - E and G) and two chords (Am and Em) he hypnotised me for about an hour - or rather he would have done if the modern bourgeois audience had not forgotten how to listen to music. So much noisy chat, so much fiddling with digital devices. People seem to have no conception of how rude they are. Oh well... Boubacar was oblivious. He has a virtuoso harmonica player with him now, no doubt to take some of the weight off the 73 year old maestro, and this fellow managed to avoid the temptation to overplay for, let's say, about half the gig. Whenever Boubacar played a few solo runs, however, it was as though a clean slate was created afresh. The shifting grid of interlocking polyrhythms, so subtle that in some cases they were more like ghostly suggestions... Such a joy to hear a great master so soon after the death of BB King. Someone who can really do it. Towards the end, Boubacar surprised us, and perhaps even himself, with his explorations of a Spanish Phrygian piece, before finally encoring with a joyful major key celebration. I have wanted to see him for many years. He did not disappoint.
Pleasant surprise also to see Jon T-Bone Taylor and his lovely wife sitting in front of me!

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 9:20 am
by Jamie Renton
Thanks Adam, pretty much sums up what I experienced when I saw Boubacar at Ronnies a couple of years ago (only without T-Bone Taylor or his lovely wife).

I worried that the harmonica player would overdo it and was pleasantly surprised when he didn't (at least not all the time).

Did Boubacar have his percussionist with him as well?

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 9:29 am
by Adam Blake
Oh yes, he was wonderful. I don't know his name.

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 10:25 am
by Jamie Renton
I can't remember either, but he and Boubacar have been playing togetherv for some time and I think it shows.

Do you know Boubacar's story? He was a pop star in early 60s Mali, his West African-ised versions of the Twist and Madison got played on Mali State Radio every morning. But coming from a non-musician caste, he wasn't permitted to make any money from music (Mali was, at the time, supposedly a socialist state, but one with a very strong caste system?!). So he hung up his guitar, in order to feed his family and became a shopkeeper, then a farmer. It was only in the 1980s, with a renewed interest in his music from Europe, that he took up music again, now playing in the gentle bluesy style for which he has since become known.

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 10:57 am
by Adam Blake
Thanks, Jamie, I had forgotten about that.

He has a similar repose and inevitability to Fred McDowell somehow. His guitar playing sounds like it has been there for thousands of years, and that it will always be there.

Re: Boubacar Traore: Rich Mix 21.5.15

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 1:34 pm
by alister prince
Thanks Adam, a nice review. And Jamie, yes Boubacar''s story is like that of many blues performers - euphemistically described in the Encoyclopaedia of the Blues as 'working outside music'. It's a point often forgotten, or ignored, by those who knock Charlie and the gang who got together to promote 'world music'; many musicians who had fallen on hard times had their careers revived. And we can still enjoy them today.
Aly