Music

10 Standout Francophone Songs From 2021

Featuring MHD, Squidji x Lous and the Yakuza, Ichon, Meryl, Lala &ce and more.

Back in 2020 every artist, or so it seems, dropped albums. Was it a way to deal with the global pandemic and lockdowns all over the world? Probably. 2021 was different in the sense that, strangely enough, it seemed to be even more chaotic than last year, as we learned to live with the “new normal.”

However as recording studios and music venues reopened, artists had more chances to collaborate with each other. And this year, more than ever, the Francophone artists featured in the list below worked with each other to create beautiful work. Let’s walk you through a selection of Francophone Songs that stood out to us this year, below.

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Interview

Amadou & Mariam Forever

We talk to the legendary Malian duo about their rich past, songwriting process and their advice for young African artists with disabilities.

Amadou & Mariam don't require an introduction.

The couple has been making Afro-blues music for over 35 years, drawing inspiration from their home of Mali, for over 35 years.

Their 1999 albumSou Ni Tilé sold 100,000 copies. In 2005, their album Dimanche à Bamako won the French Victoire de la Musique prize for Best World Music Album of the year and the BBC Radio 3 Award for Africa. It also went platinum in France after selling over 300,000 copies. The duo have performed with U2, Coldplay, Blur and many others.

We caught up with them below for a conversation about their rich past, their songwriting process and their advice for young African artists with disabilities, ahead of the duo's performance at the upcoming London Jazz Festival 2021.

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