Audio

Sidi Touré 'Alafia'

Sidi Touré 'Alafia' is the latest from the Malian bluesman, out 9/17 via Thrill Jockey.

Sidi-Touré-Alafia

Sidi Touré's latest full length, Alafia, serves as the latest case study of how the segregation of a "world music" genre has been rendered increasingly irrelevant in today's music climate. In its place has emerged a globalization of earbuds with implications to be found in the rise of Alafia's creator. Touré is, after all, a Malian bluesman beloved for well-deserved reasons by the likes of Vincent Moon's Take Away Show circles and signed to a Chicago-based indie label. It's even worth making the case that the eclectic strings and pedals of Tokyo-based labelmate Dustin Wong loop with traces of Touré's guitar.


On his third international release Touré invites listeners into a peaceful state of mind, via meditative melodies and pick-induced rhythms. While at many times it's impossible to avoid the desire to dance, Alafia occasionally subdues into a a Songhaï folk fit for the tropics, most notably on "L'eau: The Water." Across the album's tracks, a panic-speed guitar and chants result in a total zone of tranquility. There is beauty to be found in Touré's rhythmic complexity, a peacefulness born out of chaos. Alafia is out now via Thrill Jockey. Watch the video for opening track "Ay Hora" and check out Touré's upcoming dates below.

Sidi Touré Tour Dates

Sep 19 - Grounds For Thought, Bowling Green, OH

Sep 20 - Cat in the Cream Coffeehouse, Oberlin, OH

Sep 21 - Thunderbird, Pittsburgh, PA

Sep 27 - Highline Ballroom, New York, NY

Sep 28 - Dome Theater, Arlington, VA

Oct 1 - The Center at Eagle Hill, Hardwick, MA

Oct 4 - Saint Anselm College, Dana Center, Manchester, NH

Oct 5 - BAM Café, Brooklyn, NY

Oct 6 - Crossroads, Philadelphia, PA

Oct 10 - Grand Park (Daniel Pearl World Music Days), Los Angeles, CA

Oct 12 + 13 - Shakori Hills Festival, Pittsboro, NC

Oct 19 - Rasa, Utrecht, Netherlands

Oct 24 - WOMEX, Cardiff, UK

Oct 25 - The Lexington, London, UK

Interview

Kofi Jamar Switches Lanes In 'Appetite for Destruction'

The Ghanaian rapper and "Ekorso" hitmaker presents a different sound in his latest EP.

The drill scene in Ghana has been making waves across the continent for some time now. If you're hip to what a crop of young and hungry artists from the city of Kumasi in Ghana and beyond have been doing over the past year, then you already know about rapper Kofi Jamar.

Towards the end of November last year he dropped one of the biggest drill songs to emerge from Ghana's buzzing drill scene, the popular street anthem "Ekorso." In the December and January that followed, "Ekorso" was the song on everyone's lips, the hip-hop song that took over the season, with even the likes of Wizkid spotted vibing to the tune.

Currently sitting at over 10 million streams across digital streaming platforms, the song topped charts, even breaking records in the process. "Ekorso" maintained the number one spot on Apple Music's Hip-Hop/Rap: Ghana chart for two months uninterrupted, a first in the history of the chart. It also had a good stint at number one of the Ghana Top 100 chart as well, among several other accolades.

Even though he's the creator of what could be the biggest song of Ghana's drill movement till date, Kofi Jamar doesn't plan on replicating his past music or his past moves. He has just issued his second EP, a 6-track project titled Appetite for Destruction, and it would surprise you to know that there isn't a single drill song on it. Although drill played a huge role in his meteoric rise, he wants to be known as way more than just a drill rapper. He wants to be known as a complete and versatile artist, unafraid to engage in any genre — and he even looks forward to creating his own genre of music during the course of his career.

We spoke to Kofi Jamar about his latest EP, and he tells us about working with Teni, why he's gravitating away from drill to a new sound, and more. Check out our conversation below.

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