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Baaba Maal, Community Leader

 by Bennett Gordon


Tags: Arts, music, Baaba Maal, Senegal, New Statesman,

Internationally, Baaba Maal is one of Africa’s most renowned musicians. Inside his native Senegal, Baaba Maal’s role is more like an elder statesman and conflict mediator. Where he grew up in northern Senegal, Rachel Aspden writes for the New Statesman, “Master musicians become community leaders, spokesmen and arbiters of disputes; hence the audiences that queue to consult Baaba Maal after a show.” 

Unlike the celebrity activists of Western culture, Baaba Maal’s roots his social work in Senagalese tradition. “We’re all part of the same community,” he says, “we just sit down and talk together.”

To watch a clip of Baaba Maal’s music, click on the video below: