Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Almamy Samory, A tribute by Bembeya Jazz

A short history of samory:
The Mandinka empire of Almami Samori Touré(1870-1898)
Somori Touré was a Dioula and born poor in ± 1833. He had to join the army to earn money to free his mother. After that he was trading in gold from Wassulu and cattle from the Futa Jalon.The Dioulas were all long-distanttraders,moslims but not fanatic. By about 1870,Samori Toure brought with surprising speed all states of the Wassulu resort under his control. He took the tittle of Almami and made Bisandugu his capital and captured Kankan. So in 1886 his empire was the third largest of western Sudan (after Tocolor and Sokoto)The Mandinka-empire was probaly the most efectively governed of the larger West African empires of the nineteenth century.Between 1885 and 1889 Samori Touré followed the policy of playing the British off against the French to preserve his independence.The Britsh government merely bargained the Mandinka empire for French concessions elsewhere in Africa.So in 1891 Samori faced the French alone.They retreated slowly to the east and carried out "a scorched earth"policy, burning villages, crops and everything of value.The French toke over a dead and deserted country.After the seven years of war the French captured Sikasso and Bobo Dioulasso in 1898. When the French armies advanced him from the North, West and the South Samori had to give up and he evacuated his second capital Dabakala. When the French offered him safe conduct and a quiet retirement in his home village he accepted.In spite of this promise, the Almami Samori Toure was deported to Gabon via St-Louis(Senegal) and died on the 2e of june 1900 by a pneumonia.

This first youtube link is the song composed about the worrior legacies of Keme Burama, the commander of Samory. At the same time Keme Burama happens to be Samory's younger brother. The next link is about Samory himself.
This song will be more revealing to those who understand french more. The band pay homage to Samory, Mori Kijan Jebateh, Alpha Yahya, Almori Njie, Sheik Usman Danfodio and all the heros of west African anti-colonialist struggle.
He sang that, the battles favour the mori (spiritual master). Much has been related about Samori.

One song that stood out is that against alcahol, very funny.
Iconic mandinka mori singer singing in Polfuta, Sory Kandia Kuyateh a unifying voice in Genuea.

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