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BIO



Marked by the ancestral culture of the Mandingo hunters, Abou Diarra is a n’goni player (Mandigo harp) with a strange and atypical itinerary. Trained by a virtuoso blind master, Vieux Kanté, he traveled for several months the roads from Abidjan to Bamako and Conakry…on foot, with his instrument as sole companion. Going through the most remote villages of West Africa, as well as modern metropoles, he collected both traditional, hidden musics as well as urban, contemporary sounds… His music talks of travel, exile, movement…Fascinated with blues, jazz, reggae… his rhythmics and styles mix up countries, sonorities, influences.

Nicknamed the ‘n’Goni Jimi Hendrix’, he can successively replace a guitar, a harp, a bass, and leave astounded the best string instrument musicians. Known as a breakthrough artist in Mali and adjacent countries, he is among the new West African hit artists (he can be found in charts, radio shows, interviews…). Performing more and more, he starts establishing himself, defines his own style little by little and goes through the African tradition with his eclectic mix of jazz music, blues music, afro funk… He passes through Europe and Africa since 2008 taking part in numerous concerts and festivals…

During his concerts, Abou Diarra is accompanied by his band, “Donko Band”. Coming from West Africa, they are all established musicians who are bursting with passion for Mandingo music, African blues, afro piti and groove… Abou Diarra and the musicians of the Donko Band like to redefine the borders of a mixed universe between blues and Mandingo music, sustained by the acoustics of the n’goni strings, the roundness of the Malian sun, the suave beat of urban praises and the poetical customs and rites of the Wassoulou…