||Burkina Faso is by far not as famous for its music as neighbouring Mali. Yet, the cultural diversity and the talents
should be able to foster a thriving music scene. This can probably be explained by the fact that, over decades, the government
has not been able to promote the creation of a music industry as much as in Mali or Guinea. Only after 1983, artists
were promoted during the yearly Semaine Nationale de la Culture.
Upper Volta, as the country was known until August 3, 1984, has known a number
of military putches and there was no stable environment for the development of arts. In addition, imported music, be it
Malian music or music from Congo or Côte d'Ivoire was fairly predominant on the music market.
Obviously, and in spite of this lack of support, a fair number of artists and bands have
been able to record over the years. One of the most
famous is Amadou Balaké who participated much later in Africando.
Other names from the early years were Georges Ouedraogo and
Mangue Konde & le Super Mandé,
Tidiani Coulibaly & Les Dafra Stars and Simporé Maurice.
The 1980s and 1990s saw the arrival of a younger generation. There is a large variation in style, from zouk and reggae via
mandingo-inspired music to local rhythms such as warba. Idak Bassave,
Nick Domby, Bil Aka Kora, Zedess and
Solo Dja Kabako are the main exponents of this new generation.
In traditional music, however, Burkina Faso is the place to be. This goes from percussion
(Adama Dramé) via balafon music (Saramaya,
Les Freres Coulibaly) to various traditional groups for music and dance
such as Farafina, Djiguiya and le Troupe Saaba.
There is also the traditionally inspired world music of Gabin Dabiré, who is based in Italy
since many years.
Finally, there is quite an active hip hop scene in Burkina, with prominent outfits being Yeleen,
Sofaa, Kouma Kan, Clepto-Gang and many others.
||Official name: Burkina Faso|
||Region: West Africa|
|Main ethnic groups:
||More than 60, main groups are Mossi (near to half of the population),
Gourmantché, Fulani, Dioula, and Bissa|
Flags courtesy of ITA's
Flags of All Countries used with permission.