« Zara » is the new single from London’s favourite Gambian griot Jally Kebba Susso. It marks his comeback as a solo artist, after a three-year hiatus which has seen him take the stage of many European festivals alongside his band Afriquoi – whose latest EP « Time is A Gift Which We Share All The Time » was also released by Mawimbi Records in 2020.
Produced in collaboration with Afriquoi bandmate Nico Bentley, « Zara » is a fierce, uptempo track, nodding to UK bass music, Chicagoan footwork and West African afropop. Named after Jally’s stepdaugther, « Zara » is an ode to the feeling of togetherness the Gambian artist experiences when traveling back to his native manding land.
The EP also contains three thoughtful reworks by artists taken from Mawimbi’s extended roster and family (Pouvoir Magique, Ozferti, M.Baba).
French producer and former Mawimbi member Pouvoir Magique delivers an epic half-tempo rework of the original track, retaining only the strongest kora melodies and adding some future bass wizardry reminiscent of the likes of Fakear or Maribou State.
Ozferti adds his own distinct futuristic touch to the original, playfully arranging triple time and 4/4 patterns together, while building a complex, progressive bass music journey that ends in an unknown African desert.
Réunion-based producer M.Baba draws in the inherently emotional tones of the kora to build a subtle, dreamy rework, cleverly filtering Jally’s vocals in and out and softening the original track’s footwork-influenced beats