The Late Solo Cissokho

Senegal:Veteran Kora Player laid to rest

By Bakary Ceesay

The Late Solo Cissokho
The Late Solo Cissokho

Senegalese kora legend, Ibrahima Solo Cissokho was laid to rest on Tuesday in Ziguinchor, Casamance. He died in Oslo, Norway recently where he was staying.

Hundreds of fans, family, government officials and fellow griots attended the burial.Many described him as a pious Muslim and philanthropist.

Solo Cissokho, a jazz and mbalax musician has passed away. Born in 1963 in Ziguinchor, Senegal, the international musician was well known for his artistic skills in playing Kora, Djembe, guitar and bass.

An award-winning Senegalese kora maestro, Solo has found a musical home in Norway, and established a base from which he traveled extensively in order to expand and explore the sonic possibilities of his long-necked African harp.

 He’s received the BBC World Music Awards, nominated to the Nordic Council’s Music Prize, released hailed albums, played with Youssou N’Dour and Ali Farka Touré and toured relentlessly in Norway and abroad. Oslo-based Solo Cissokho has come a long way since he built his first kora at the age of seven.

 Solo Cissokho, believed to be a son of the late Kora legend Sunjulu Cissokho, belonged to the Mandinka people and hailed from Ziguinchor in the Casamance district, and was born into a family that has seen the art of kora playing being passed from generation to generation through more than 700 years. He was very well known in The Gambia too.

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