Dobet Gnahoré Na Afriki

Dobet Gnahoré Na Afriki
Dobet Gnahoré is a young singer from the Ivory Coast but her songs are anything but immature. The many experiences of her young life — love, children, political turmoil and creative endeavours — have given her voice layers of emotion and texture, creating a prismatic sound that conjures colour from pure light. Dobet grew up in the artistic cooperative of Ki-Yi M’Bock, learning from her master percussionist father and from the artists who surrounded her on a daily basis. One day, a young French guitarist, Colin Laroche de Féline, showed up. A stay that was supposed to last three days stretched to three years, love and a child with Dobet. They fled the coup that shook the Ivory Coast and headed to France in 1999 and her career has been on a steady upward swing since. The songs tell tales of personal missions — the swinging "Telo De” encourages parents to allow their children to express themselves creatively, a message that Dobet, who at 12 demanded to stay at home with musicians rather than attend school, certainly appreciates. The songs are rich and multifaceted, with wonderful harmonic and rhythmic textures. There is enough production to give it a polished groove but not enough to take away from the organic feel of the songwriting — that these are the words and melodies of a person, not a studio. (Cumbancha)