19th July 2014 21:00saturday
Main stageHoly Trinity Square
Youssou Ndour's bedrock in Senegalese music and storytelling remains the hallmark of his artistic personality.
In October 1959, he was born a traditional "Griot" singer. After two years in street theatre, Youssou's career really started in 1972, when he was just thirteen. Papa Samba Diop, known as Mba - leader of the Star Band in Dakar - passed away. Youssou sang a tribute to him, a song he composed onstage right there in Senegal's Saint-Louis Stadium. At the end of his song, Youssou was given a standing ovation.
In 1981, after leaving the Etoiles group in Dakar, Youssou founded the exemplary orchestra Super Etoile. 1984 saw its Parisian debuts during Africa Fête, the African cultural festival set up by Mamadou Konté from Mali.
After meeting Peter Gabriel in 1984, Youssou N’Dour joined "Band Aid for Ethiopia"; in 1988 he sang at Wembley when Nelson Mandela was freed, and then alongside Sting, Tracy Chapman and Bruce Springsteen for Amnesty International.
In 1990 came one of his most beautiful albums, Set, which included the song Medina, an elegy that was pure and filled with nostalgia, and it featured a clear trumpet whose sound was almost Middle-Eastern.
By 1996 he was already famous worldwide thanks to 7 Seconds, his duet with Neneh Cherry (released in 1994 on the album Wommat, which also featured his cover of Bob Dylan's Chimes of Freedom), and he recorded Voices of the Heart of Africa with the great Yandé Codou Sène in the pure Senegalese Griot tradition.
In 2003 he celebrated his becoming a Murid, following the spiritual path of Sufism, with the album Egypt, recorded in Cairo with an Egyptian orchestra conducted by Fati Salama. Two years later in 2005, this hymn to a tolerant Islam received a Grammy Award. The title Shukran Bamba gave fervent thanks to Sheik Amadou Bamba, the founder of the Murid brotherhood: "You taught me pardon and compassion, and the rejection of violence and arrogance."
His latest album Dakar- Kingston released in 2010 is a tribute to legendary Jamaican singer Bob Marley and an exploration of musical links with reggae.
In 2011 he was awarded an honorary doctorate degree at Yale University and currently serves as Minister of Tourism in Senegal.
In August 2013 he was awarded the prestigious Polar Music Prize.
After a 3-year break now he is returning to music which was put into the shade due to his political activities.
Youssou NDOUR - Lead Vocal
Abdoulaye LO - Drums
Moustapha GAYE - Guitar
Pape Oumar NGOM - Guitar
Assane THIAM - Tama
Babacar FAYE - Percussion
El Hadji FAYE - Percussion
Birame DIENG - Backing Vocals
Pascale Kameni CAMGA - Backing Vocals
Moustapha FAYE - Keyboards
Jean Jacques OBAM EDJOO - Bass
Alain OYONO - Saxophone
Pape Moussa SONKO - Dance, Percussion