Often referred to as "The Hendrix of the Sahara," Vieux Farka Toure was born in Niafunke, Mali, in 1981. He is the son of legendary Malian guitar player Ali Farka Toure, who died in 2006. Vieux was initially a drummer-calabash at Mali's Institut National des Arts, but he secretly began playing guitar in 2001. Ali Farka Toure was weakened with cancer when Vieux announced that he was going to record an album. Ali recorded a couple of tracks with him, and these recordings, which can be heard on Vieux's debut album, were among his final ones. On his first album, Vieux pays homage to his father and follows Ali's musical tradition, giving new versions of the West African music that is echoed in the American blues.
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