I’ll interrupt the Protest Songs mini series to commemorate the passing of Dimi Mint Abba.
Dimi Mint Abba,known as the ‘Diva of the Desert’ was one of the finest and best-loved singers from Mauritania, one of the crossroads countries of Africa, with Algeria and western Sahara to the north, Senegal to the south and Mali to the east.
Known as the “diva of the desert”, Dimi Mint Abba’s songs blended north and west African influences, mixing Arabic scales and improvisation with echoes of west African instrumentation. Her style won her a following not just in north Africa but in Mali, where Ali Farka Touré was so impressed by her that he mentioned her to his British record label, World Circuit Records. As a result, she was invited to tour the UK in the spring of 1989 and recorded her first and only British album album, Moorish Music From Mauritania, for World Circuit the following year.
In 2006, World Circuit released her first new studio recording in well over a decade, a track called Song 4. This track was recorded in Madrid with a group of flamenco musicians. It was released on the World Circuit’s 20th anniversary compilation set, World Circuit Presents and is my posted track for this week.