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Musician Spotlight

Badegna Foli

Badegna Foli

Mali / France

"Badegna Foli," a term derived from the Bambara language spoken in Mali, means "brothers" and "music" respectively. Despite its African focus, the band was actually formed by two musicians, Antoine and Hugo, from the city of Mayenne in northwestern France. Their collaboration stemmed from a desire to craft a distinctive musical venture, breaking away from the predictable paths of "world music," while ensuring its accessibility to diverse audiences. Joining the duo is the remarkable Malian bassist Sekou Bah, renowned for his work with prominent artists such as Fatoumata Diawara, Oumou Sangaré, and Salif Keita. Originally operating remotely, Bah eventually relocated from his Bamako studio to France, seamlessly becoming the third musical sibling. The group expanded further with the addition of the skilled drummer Fabien and the versatile saxophonist and flutist Camille. Together, they present an engaging and harmonious blend of influences on stage, intertwining French and Bambara vocals to foster genuine connections with their audience.

The reggae-flavored “Danse” is from Badegna Foli's eponymous 2022 debut album. It features Malian reggae star Koko Dembélé on vocals. The lyrics are in Bambara and French and encourage peopole to dance their troubles away. "Dance, dance, for yesterday and for tomorrow / Dance, dance on the edge of destiny / Dance, dance until you touch the divine.”


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