Production Language English
Country of Origin Senegal
Description Senegalese singer-songwriter-activist—and legendary live performer—Youssou NDOUR performs two nights at BAM with his band Le Super Étoile and special guests. The engagement marks NDOUR’s fourth time on BAM’s stage since headlining the historic Muslim Voices: Arts & Ideas festival in spring of 2009.
NDOUR is widely credited with creating and popularizing Senegal’s music style of mbalax, a blend of the country’s traditional griot percussion and praise-singing with Afro-Cuban arrangements and flavors. A music style which garnered popularity beginning in the 1970s, mbalax means "rhythm" in Wolof (language of the Wolof people) and is characterized by rhythms of the indigenous sabar drum accompanied by keyboards, synths, and vocals influenced by African and Arabic vocal stylings. This music gave birth to the mbalax dance movement which continues to be a staple in nightclubs, social and religious gatherings, and benchmark life events. At its essence, mbalax is a completely original and powerful form of expression that radiates independence, inclusiveness, freedom from previous conventions, and tells a multifaceted story of cultural diaspora.