Fatoumata Diawara announces new album, Maliba

It's the soundtrack to a very special project commemorating the historic Timbuktu Manuscripts

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Fatoumata Diawara has announced details of a new album, Maliba.

The record is a collaboration with the Google Arts & Culture platform and will be available digitally only on March 11.

The seven new songs on Maliba form the soundtrack to a special online presentation of the Timbuktu Manuscripts. This collection was imperilled when members of the militant Islamist group Ansar Dine seized Timbuktu in 2012 and began destroying many historic artefacts. Maliba tells the story of their preservation.

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Says Diawara, ““This project means a lot to me. To be involved in the protection of the Timbuktu Manuscripts is a huge honour. Conditions for men and women in Mali are very different and for a woman to be involved in this cultural preservation is very important. It is unbelievable to be part of it and it feels like a dream. I’m so proud and so happy. I’m very in touch with my ancestral past. Many of the visuals and ideas I use come to me in my dreams, dreams about my ancestors. To be given a chance to help protect our ancestral and cultural legacy is so special to me.”

You can hear the first track, “Yakandi“, here:

The tracklisting for Maliba is:

An Ka Bin
Kalan
Maliba
One Day
Save It
Sini
Yakandi

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