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Awards for World Music 2006
Thione Seck's 'Orientation'
THIONE SECK Orientation (Stern's)
It's just Thione Seck's luck. For most of his career, Senegal's eternally second most favourite musician has tried to emerge from behind Youssou N'Dour's mighty shadow. Having failed to dethrone the king of mbalax, he decided to embed his Bollywood-inspired vocals in completely new sounds, and got French star producer François Breant to paint a lavish canvas of lush Egyptian strings and subtle strands of Indian music.

And then Youssou beat him to it and released Egypt, while Seck's completed work gathered dust on the back shelves of Syllart. It's a minor tragedy, because this time, Thione Seck really did come up with the better product. The intricate arrangements buzz with activity, voices wail, violins whisper, tablas squeal and sabar drums faintly remind of Seck's homeland. This is the record Thione Seck should have made all along. His languid singing has always been inspired by Indian movies, and has been strangely at odds with Senegal's rapid mbalax drumming.

Surrounded by a stellar cast of North African and Indian musicians, he finally seems to have found a musical home he feels completely at ease in. This is as dramatic and cinematic as you'd expect a Breant production to be and still profound. It's full of finely crafted details that open up gradually with repeated listening, until you've been sucked into this unique Bollywood film, staged somewhere between West Africa and South Asia. Recorded three years ago in Dakar, Madras and Paris, this extraordinary encounter nearly became one of the great losses of a struggling music market. And though it now sneaks quietly onto the scene, without the drums and fanfares that were supposed to herald its arrival, it was well worth the wait.

Katharina Lobeck (from fRoots 268, October 2005)
Biography at
Thione Seck feature at NPR
More at Charlie Gillett's 'Sound of the World'

yanks wakefield england
thion seck is one of the best musician in senegal who some one can listen to his music and have a really feeling in it if you know what the music is saying i believe that all the music of thion is preaching about the world how human are i believe thion get lot of his songs in the quran or in the bible.

thione seck is the best singer in senegal. he even sings better then youssou ndour. tyhe only thing youssou got more then him is popularty. but thione sings way better then him with his powerful voice. there is no powerful voice mbalakh start like him. thione you the best. thats that fact.

Thione is just great!!!!

Ken Reeder, Brooklyn,N.Y.
Orientation,is like a side of him that's finally been revealed. And as usual, he's just so cool about it, it seems natural! Wonderfull!

Bai E. Saine, The Gambia
A great singer with a great voice.

Firoz Canada
God has gifted you with a voice of angels. My Allah bless your gift.

Mick, Swansea
Fabulous CD that demonstrates how much hype was attached to Youssou N'Dour's Egypt. Anyone who has heard that CD should listen to "Orientation" and do themselves a favour.

Giorgio, NYC
Superb CD, I can't recommend it highly enough.

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