Grammy winner Youssou N’Dour was born in Senegal On 1 October, 1959. His contribution to African music and his devotion to the people and the continent cannot be overestimated. He was an important in the development of the mbalax style of music. Mbalax combines traditional griot (praise singing, story telling, the root of much music we listen to today, gospel, jazz, rap, etc) with Caribbean and other West African musical influences.
He has been hailed as the most influential Africa artist in the world, has worked with Bruce Springsteen, Tracy Chapman, Peter Gabriel and Sting, as well as Nenah Cherry, and Wyclef Jean, just to mention a few English speaking musicians.
I first found this song as part of a French newscast, where he sang it to an assembled crowd where a monument to the end of slavery in France was dedicated. It is sung in Wolof, French and English.
And his birthday was this past week; happy 50th Birthday, Youssou!