Baaba Maal, the Senegalese master-musician and cultural warrior, has an electrifying new sound and exhilarating studio album.
The Traveller, Baaba’s eleventh album, was released in January 2016, a mixture of roots African sounds and cutting-edge western electro elements.
The Traveller was recorded in London and Senegal; in making the record Baaba Maal has collaborated with Johan Hugo from The Very Best. The Very Best’s two albums were genre-shattering, bright meshes of Afropop and electro; Hugo has also worked with M.I.A, Coldplay, and Amadou and Marian, among many others.
‘Baaba is an amazing guy: he’s seen it all and done it all,’ says Hugo. ‘He’s heavily involved in amazing projects all over the world that help people, so he’s a very inspiring person to be around and work with. It was just an honor to be able to have so much fun together and make music.’
‘I am so inspired by The Traveller,’ says Baaba Maal. ‘Working with Johan I feel we have achieved a perfect blend of sensibilities drawn not only from Africa and Europe but from all over the globe: I feel The Traveller defines how the planet looks at this time from the pointof-view of Senegal, Africa’s most westerly country. And despite problems in many places, that view is extremely positive and inspiring.’
Complementing the record Baaba has a tight new road-band, a trio, a departure from his previous larger line-ups, that will express the fresh sound, soulful truth and pulsating excitement of his latest innovative music.
A number of keynote headline concerts are scheduled. These include a performance in December 2015 at the Blues du Fleuve, the festival Baaba Maal has established in his home town of Podor, on the river Senegal.
The Senegalese superstar Baaba Maal returns to WOMAD Festival at Charlton Park in Wiltshire this summer.
This is one not to be missed!