Nice quiet morning at home, baking bread, waiting for paint to dry and thinking about good music. So, here’s some. In 1998 Bruce Cockburn went to visit Mali for a film called River of Sand and along the way got to play with two of West Africa’s top musicians – Ali Farka Toure, a stunning blues guitarist, now sadly dead, but who made some beautiful albums and collaborations along the way (his album Talking Timbuktu, with Ry Cooder is one of my favourites); and Toumani Diabate, prince of kora players (my favourite album is a solo effort, The Mande Variations, which I play often for children coming into collective worship). You can watch clips from Bruce’s film and him jamming with Toure and singing his World of Wonders with Diabate here.
To complete the triangle of joy, Toure and Diabate have made music together, both being Malian and important and all – the best album is In the Heart of the Moon (2005).
If you want a morning of lifting the lid off musical boundaries, listen to all three and on a snowy day, heralding a snowy week in Milton Keynes, bring some sunshine to your soul!