El Hadj N'Diaye: Geej (Marabi)

 |   |  <1 min read

El Hadj N'Diaye: Cheick Anta Diop
El Hadj N'Diaye: Geej (Marabi)

This Senegalese singer-guitarist (here recorded in Paris) has one of those mesmerisingly soulful voices which, even though you probably don't understand a word, pulls you in.

His lyrics address social issues (if translating avec mon rudimentary Francaise est bien) -- but you get that from the emotion he pours into the words.

French producers often like to polish up musicians from the region and here you get fretless bass, electric guitar, sax and cello -- but these are all kept well in check and remain mercifully in service of the song.

There is also kora and N'Diaye's acoustic guitar to keep matters very grounded, and everywhere the song emerging from the vocals remains the focus. That aching voice, the repeated rhythmic phrases, the discreet touches of instrumental embellishment . . . .

it's a persuasive mix and the effect (as on the solo title track) can be quite moving.

Not a name that trips lightly off the tongue, but the music certainly comes easily and repeatedly from the stereo.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Serge Gainsbourg: Histoire de Melody Nelson (LightintheAttic/Rhythmethod)

Serge Gainsbourg: Histoire de Melody Nelson (LightintheAttic/Rhythmethod)

As with the great Jacques Brel, there is no easy shorthand into the French singer, songwriter, actor and cultural icon that was Serge Gainsbourg (1928-91). Gainsbourg -- much revered in France... > Read more

BILL SEVESI INTERVIEWED: Light of the Pacific

BILL SEVESI INTERVIEWED: Light of the Pacific

Bill Sevesi says he speaks three languages, but he actually speaks four. The three he will admit to are Tongan (he was born in Nuku'alofa almost 88 years ago), English which he learned when he came... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

BOB MARLEY'S INFLUENCE ON MUSIC AND CULTURE IN AOTEAROA (2016): A panel discussion with Tigi Ness, Leonie Hayden and Graham Reid

BOB MARLEY'S INFLUENCE ON MUSIC AND CULTURE IN AOTEAROA (2016): A panel discussion with Tigi Ness, Leonie Hayden and Graham Reid

It was my pleasure to take part in this panel discussion -- hosted by Duncan Greive -- about the importance and impact of Bob Marley in New Zealand popular music and culture. This was the... > Read more

Oli Brown: Here I Am (Ruf)

Oli Brown: Here I Am (Ruf)

On the back of his 2010 album Heads I Win Tails You Lose, Elsewhere noted that while this young, hard-edged blues guitarist came up a little short in the originality stakes he was certainly one to... > Read more