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Marc Minelli

Playing guitar and singing in rock groups in the 80s, Minelli was at first a fan of 60s British bands such as the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. He was always open to other musical forms and he heard and admired Fela Kuti and King Sunny Ade in Paris in the early 80s. It was not until the late 90s that he began to listen seriously to jazz. Even so, his first influences were not musicians of his own generation but were John Coltrane, Miles Davis and Charles Mingus. In Morocco he played guitar with Gnawas singers. Uninhibited by genre boundaries, he was thus open to the encouragement of Paris-based producer-manager, Marc Antoine Moreau, to consider world music. He was introduced to Malian singer Mamani Keita, a former backing singer for Salif Keita. Minelli used tapes that Keita had recorded with a Malian guitarist as the basis for some original compositions in a jazz style. The result, 2002’s Electro Bamako, attracted a lot of favorable comment.

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