Brian Eno saw Guimba Kouyaté and his band perform in London and was blown away, so he decided to bring the group to Punkt 2012. Guitarist and “Djele N’Goni”-player Guimba Kouyaté is born into one of the greatest Jali (Griot) families in Mali. He brings all of his learning and playing from perhaps the most pure place: from his ancestors.
Guimba Kouyaté Biography
Guimba Kouyaté is born into one of the greatest Jali ( Griots) family in Mali.
His grand father Djeli Baba Sissoko was of the most respected Goni player.
His father Mamaye Kouyaté Goni player and His mother Mah Damba griot singer taught him him how to become a musician.
Boasting a great Malian heritage, guitarist and Djele N’Goni player, Guimba Kouyaté brings all of his learning and playing from perhaps the most pure place: from his ancestors. With his family standing as one of the finest “jali” families, both his father and grandfather were renowned for their expertise on Goni. His mother, a griot singer, taught him the craft of musicianship, and this strong musical base in his family comes though clearly in his playing. It is also due to this strong, tradition-based teaching that Guimba is able to retain their authentic sound, even when modern sounds and techniques are at play within the music. One can easily hear that the clashing sounds of old and new are unlike anything else in music today, and one cannot overlook Kouyaté’s musicianship and importance in this sound. He is collaborating with artists like Blick Bassy and Cheick thidaine seck, Donso, Doctor L.
In the social structure emanating from the ancient Manding empire founded by Sundiata (1230-1255), people were divided into three classes: the horon or nobles, the dyon or captives and the nyamakalas or castes which comprised four main groups : the blacksmiths (noumou), the cobblers (garankê), the mimes (tinah) and the jali, called “griots” by Europeans.