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Awards for World Music 2007 - Newcomer
Nuru Kane

Nuru Kane
Dakar born, Paris based, Nuru Kane was born in Senegal in the 1970s and migrated to France in the mid-90s. There his vocal and multi-instrumental abilities found him in demand both fronting his own band and guesting with others. Yet Kane did not truly find his musical direction until a trip to Morocco left him captivated by the rhythms of Gnawa.

Gnawa originates with the Gnawa brotherhoods: these religious and social organisations are comprised of the descendents of West Africans who were brought across the Sahara to Marrakech as slaves centuries ago. The Gnawa’s music remains North Africa’s most primal and maintains a strong link to that of Mali/Senegal. Kane was so impressed by the Gnawa that he returned to Paris with the central Gnawa instrument, the guimbri (a melodic three-stringed acoustic bass) and formed Bayefall Gnawa with Thierry Fournel (oud, guitar and sanza) and Djeli Makan Sissoko (n’goni and tama). Fusing North and West African influences, the band developed a following on the Paris club scene and were invited to perform at Mali’s legendary Festival In The Desert in 2004.

Their impressive performance at Festival In The Desert lead to an invitation from the UK’s Riverboat Records to record an album. Nuru cut his debut album Sigil in Scotland and Paris with Mouth Music’s Martin Swan producing. Sigil effortlessly fuses North African Gnawa with the eclectic, soulful flavours of Senegalese music. Sigil’s instrumentation is primarily acoustic but the results are electric. The lyrics of Sigil focus on religious teachings, human emotions, morality, spiritual leaders and the impact of colonization and violence. While credited solely to Nuru Kane both Thierry Fournel and Djeli Makan Sissoko (of Bayefall Gnawa) play of Sigil.

“Five years ago I released Diamono Euro, a disc for Africans about the new Euro currency sung in African languages,” says Kane. “Today I give you the music of Bayefall Gnawa, a blend of the rhythms and colours of traditional musics and Oriental and European sounds. This album is the result of all the meetings and reading that have inspired me. It is an open letter.”

Garth Cartwright

 Nuru Kane's website
Read other people's comments then Tell us what you think:

joseph tucker, 24
saw him at the tin angel in coventry and he was electric

Just seen Nuru Kane and his band tonight Amazing, had us dancing, singing, clapping and smiling the bigest smiles all night. Everyone has to see him and his band. Sheer Brilliance

chris murtagh newcastle
Nuru Kane has been like a breath of fresh air. After totally capturing the audience with the warmth of his performance, he individually served them Senegalese tea afterwards.

DJ fflyffilyfbybl - Byd Mawr soundsystem
..the best thing we've put on all year!"

Keith Millard, Milton Keynes
Nuru Kane has incredible stage presence and he has a band to back him. See them they are a must!!

Chris Murtagh Newcastle upon Tyne
Over the last 3 years I have promoted Nuru Kane 6 times which says it all. Each audience was totally enthrawled within minutes by his musicianship, vocal & dance ability and his natural stage presence. He is an obvious star but also a gentleman with no pretentions. His first album, Sigil, has set a high standard and compares with the very best.

Jim Hickson, 15
Amazing, saw him at Africa Oye 2006, met him, bought his album, not stopped listening to it since. Blues as it was meant to be.

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