"Charry brings a keen analytical ear and practical eye to these musical traditions, as well as extensive library and archival research. . . a great resource and reference point for anthropologists and historians of West Africa, and anyone interested in African music. It is also pleasant to read. . . The detailed documentation is animated throughout by his respect and admiration for a great musical tradition." -- Times Literary Supplement
(June 29, 2001)
"exhaustive . . . Charry's work should be an example for others to follow. . . a much-awaited addition to the study of West African musics, and will surely be an indispensable reference for many years to come." -- Research in African Literatures
vol. 32, no. 2 (2001)
"a superb descriptive job. . . . an excellent and comprehensive model of the study of African music, this volume is a must for all students of African music and ethnomusicology." -- Choice
From the Inside Flap
With Mande Music, Eric Charry offers the most comprehensive source available on one of Africa's richest and most sophisticated music cultures. Using resources as disparate as early Arabic travel accounts, oral histories, and archival research as well as his own extensive studies in Mali, Guinea, Senegal, and The Gambia, Charry traces this music culture from its origins pre-dating the thirteenth-century Mali empire to the recording studios of Paris and New York. He focuses on the four major spheres of Mande music-hunter's music, music of the jelis or griots, jembe and other drumming, and guitar-based modern music-exploring how each developed, the types of instruments used, the major artists, and how each sphere relates to the others. With its maps, illustrations, and musical transcriptions as well as an exhaustive bibliography, discography, and videography and a compact disc (available separately) this book is essential reading for those seeking an in-depth look at one of the most exciting, innovative, and deep-rooted phenomena on the world music scene.