It’s time to share with you my African musical fascinations. Enjoy you time spent listening to the songs below!

1. Angelique Kidjo „Pearls” (born 1960 in Benin)

There is a woman in Somalia
Scraping for pearls on the roadside
There’s a force stronger than nature
Keeps her will alive

This is how she’s dying
She’s dying to survive
Don’t know what she is made of
I would like to be that brave

2. Luis Visconde „Chofer de praça” (Taxidriver from the Plaza)
Angolan hit of 1986. Tells a story of a young man who gets into a fight with a taxi driver who doesn’t want to take him to a poor district. The driver refuses saying he’s not a boatsman refering to the fact that there’s no roads in the poor district or the roads are more like rivers.

It’s the only hit of Louis Visconde who died young after… getting into a fight with a taxidriver.

3. Tiken Jah Fakoly „Ouvrez les frontieres” (Open the Borders)

Born in Ivory Coast in 1963, the artist sings ‘to wake up the consciences.

4.  Laye Sow “Mauritania” 

Abdoulaye „Laye” Sow is a Senegalese singer and guitarist. The song appeared on the compilaton “Putumayo Presents: Acoustic Africa” – I wasn’t able to find any information about the song.

5. Cesaria Evora „Besame mucho” (Kiss me a lot)
Evora (1941-2011) a Cape Verdean singer who sang in Creole and Portuguese. A cover of “Besame mucho’ was an exception (in Spanish).

6. Rokia Traore “Beautiful Africa”
A song from “Beautiful Africa” CD released in 2013.
Rokia Traore was born in 1964 in Mali.

7. Boubacar Traore “Je chanterai pour toi” (I’ll sing for you)
A singer and guitarist born in 1942 in Mali.

8. Fatoumata Diawara. Born in 1982 in Mali, she lives in France at the moment. I mentioned her name in my post about “Timbuktu” film.

9. Juliana Kanyomozi “Woman” Juliana was born in 1982 roku in Uganda.

10. Lira „Feel Good” A South-African artist.





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  • Great list! Some of them I’ve never heard of but will definitely be adding to my playlist.

  • Wow! I really liked the first song with Josh Groban and Angelique–beautiful voices and soul!

  • Beautiful! Thanks for the soul smile :)

  • Thanks for introducing to me some African songs! It’s quite sad and ironic too about the singer for song no. 2 above.

  • Great! I will keep coming back to this post to listen to all of these great African voices!

  • I had great fun listening to these. Thanks for sharing :)

  • I enjoy hearing new music and being exposed to stuff I haven’t heard before. Thanks for sharing.

  • Its great to be exposed to new things and it represent the african culture. Would like to have more such stuff from u.

  • Mia

    What a fun post! I have to admit, I don’t know any of these songs but it was fun giving them a listen. Great way to introduce people to the great singers in African music!

  • great selection! We are looking to go to Africa this year. My son loves local music when traveling so now I have stuff to share with him before we go!