Oumou Sangaré was born in Bamako from parents originating in the Wassoulou, a historical area in the south of the river Niger. His/her mother was the singer Aminata Diakité. As of its childhood, Oumou Sangaré sings in order to help his/her mother to nourish her family, her father having given up them. At the 5 years age, it is pointed out by its talents of singer by gaining the final of the nursery schools of Bamako, and on this occasion, it occurs at the General sports Stage in front of 6.000 people. At 16 years, it leaves in round with the group Djoliba percussions. She works then with Amadou Ba Guindo, a large Master of the music Malian, with which she records in 1990 a first album “Moussoulou” (which means women), which is an important success in Africa: more than 220.000 sold official specimens (and undoubtedly more pirated much). Thanks to Ali Farka Touré, Oumou Sangaré then signs with the English label World circuit. At 21 years, it becomes a star.
Oumou Sangaré is regarded as an ambassadress of the Wassoulou, its music being inspired by the musics and traditional dances of the area. She writes and composes her songs which are based on a strong social criticism, in particular relating to place of the woman and the humble ones in the company.
Since 1990, it occurs on the largest scenes of the world (Opera of Sydney, Central Park, Roskilde festival, Festival of Essaouira, Opéra of the currency of Brussels, Queen Elisabeth Hall, all great festivals of the Netherlands.). Oumou Sangaré defends the cause of the women throughout the world. It was named Ambassadrice of FAO in 2003, price of UNESCO in 2001 and commander of Arts and Lettres of the French Republic in 1998.
Artist, public figure with the engaged standpoint, Oumou Sangaré also launched out in the business world, in hotel trade, the agriculture and the sale of car.
Price and reward
- 2001 : Price of the music 2001 of international UNESCO/Conseil of the music for its contribution to " enrichment and with the development of the music, as to the cause of peace, of comprehension enters the people and of the co-operation internationale".
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