The music of the vast African continent is many-faceted and influential. Our colleagues at the public radio program AFROPOP have built a 20-year series around it. For Hearts of Space, the search for African sounds is a bit of a challenge — by far the largest proportion is infectious dance music with a joy-per-minute index that's off the charts.
Yet along with the dancing and celebration, we find moving ballads, lullabies, ambient and contemplative pieces, especially in the West African countries of Mali and Senegal. It's a rhythmic, soulful sound, featuring melodic percussion instruments like the mbira and the balafon, and the West African harp called the kora.
On this transmission of Hearts of Space, another journey into the quieter rhythms of the African soundscape called AFRICAN HEARTBEAT, with music by MAMELANG, SAMITE, VIEUX FARKA TOURE, TAJ MAHAL & TOUMANI DIABATE, OMAR KA, BAABA MAAL, KEVIN NATHANIEL, LUDOVICO EINAUDI & BALLAKE SISSOKO, and BOB HOLROYD.