Baaba Maal, Music News, New Album, Being, TotalNtertainment

Baaba Maal Releases ‘Yerimayo Celebration’

It is a glorious, positive percussion-heavy celebration of music, see below for more

Baaba Maal’s [BA-ba Marl] daring and dazzling new album, ‘Being’ has received praise and attention around the world. When it was announced at the beginning of 2023, ‘Yerimayo Celebration’ became the rousing first glimpse from the record. Its melding of traditional African sounds and imagery with Johan Karlberg’s digital experimentation producing a call and response between ancient and modern, and set the tone for ‘Being’. Now Baaba Maal has released a new video for the track, directed by David Albury and Omri Dagan.

Featuring regular collaborators including Cheikh Ndoye on bass ngoni and Momadou Sarr on percussion, it is a glorious, positive percussion-heavy celebration of music and how in troubled times it can open the mind and hearts and fight cynicism and chaos. 

‘Yerimayo Celebration’ paid tribute to Baaba’s father, a fisherman by profession. Baaba says, “It celebrates the engagement the fishermen have with their environment, which supports them, and which they must support and look after. Because of my family, I was destined to be a fisherman but I took a different direction. But I still identify with the fisherman and the harmony they achieve in their lives, the way they are natural travellers and in their own way entertainers, seeing many people pass by and learning from them. I am as alert to the beauty of nature and climate change and the way water works, reorganising the land, as if I was spending my days fishing. I wanted to write a song where I march alongside them, committed to a kind of balance in life that

nourishes the soul, to protecting the environment and therefore the future. The song is a celebration of how much being born into a family of fishermen has influenced my song writing.” 

The video transposes Baaba from the banks of the Senegal River to the Thames, where the theme of protection and use of water follows his travels around the city, carefully protecting an ice cube as others use it wastefully, until he eventually returns the water to the river.