Few artists from Africa have enjoyed the level of international acclaim that Youssou N’Dour has in a career spanning more than 35 years. The Senegalese singer-songwriter has worked with some of the biggest stars in the world from Sting to Peter Gabriel to Bruce Springsteen to Wyclef Jean. However, most people remember him for his anthemic call to unity ‘7 Seconds‘, sang with Neneh Cherry in 1994. Sang in N’Dour’s native Wolof language, French and English, 7 Seconds topped the charts in several countries. There is practically no style of music Youssou has not dabbled in; he has expanded the traditional “mbalax” fusion to encompass hip hop, rock and even operatic singing. Careerwise he has not limited himself to music; he has acted in film productions and he has involved himself in activism, advocating for food security and human rights. After an unsuccessful shot at the presidency, N’Dour was appointed Senegal’s minister for tourism and culture in 2012.
Even with the various responsibilities he has taken on over the years, Youssou has never stopped making music. His catalog stands at 30 albums and on November 4 it will become 31 as he releases his latest project ‘Africa Rekk‘ (currently available for pre-order). The 12-song collection will be published on Sony Music, and as ever there will be some enticing features to look forward to. But there is no guest artist on the album’s first single ‘Be Careful’, a delectable slice of contemporary Zouk music that warns the listener “be careful, be careful, tomorrow, you don’t know”. The message, delivered in a mixture of French, English and Wolof, encourages you to invest more in loving relationships than in material wealth. The same point is expressed in the visual in the midst of a lot of dancing.
Miami Based, Internationally Known