Ali Ibrahim "Ali Farka" Touré (31 October 1939 – 6 March 2006) was a Malian singer and multi-instrumentalist, and one of the African continent's most internationally renowned musicians. His music is widely regarded as representing a point of intersection of traditional Malian music and its North American cousin, the blues. The belief that the latter is historically derived from the former is reflected in Martin Scorsese's often quoted characterization of Touré's tradition as constituting "the DNA of the blues". Touré was ranked number 76 on Rolling Stone's list of "The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time" and number 37 on Spin magazine's "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time".
As the first African blues man to achieve widespread popularity on his home continent, Touré was often known as "the African John Lee Hooker". Musically, the many superpositions of guitars and rhythms in his music were similar to John Lee Hooker's hypnotic blues style. He usually sang in one of several African languages, mostly Songhay, Fulfulde, Tamasheq or Bambara as on his breakthrough album, Ali Farka Touré, which established his reputation in the world music community.
Niafunké was released in 1999. The title reflects the name of the village in Mali where it was recorded. It is largely a traditional album concerning Mali.
Within the album liner notes Touré discusses his motivation for creating the album and how the music might relate to its audience. "This record is more real, more authentic. It was recorded in the place where the music belongs - deep Mali. We were in the middle of the landscape which inspired the music and that in turn inspired myself and the musicians. My music is about where I come from and our way of life and it is full of important messages for Africans. In the West perhaps this music is just entertainment and I don't expect people to understand. But I hope some might take the time to listen and learn." — Ali Farka Touré,
Niafunké marked the first of a series of albums he recorded towards the end of his career in his home town. The album was released around the same time he retired to his farm in a remote region of Mali.
find out more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ali_Farka_Touré
official website: http://www.worldcircuit.co.uk/#Ali_Farka_Toure