Youssou N'Dour, 'Egypt' and Islam

Senegalese Singer's Latest CD Explores His Muslim Faith

Youssou N'Dour

hide captionYoussou N'Dour

Courtesy Nonesuch Records

Senegalese singer Youssou N'Dour burst on to the worldwide scene with his energetic vocals on Peter Gabriel's album So, and later with the song "Shaking the Tree." He devotes his latest album Egypt to the Islamic religion.

Featuring traditional musicians from Senegal's capital of Dakar and from Cairo, Egypt is N’Dour’s lyrical celebration of the Sufi mystical tradition of Islam.

N'Dour says his latest CD is an exploration of what Muslims have in common, and how Islam is practiced in Senegal, Egypt and across the Middle East. Egypt, he says, is an album that "praises the tolerance of my religion" in an era where Islam has been largely misunderstood by non-Muslims.

N'Dour is renowned for his vocal range and songwriting abilities. He and his band, The Super Etoile, have toured the world for 20 years, picking up elements of the world's musical traditions along the way. At the base of his sound is mbalax, Senegal's traditional griot percussion and praise-singing music, filtered through Afro-Cuban, pop and rock sensibilities.

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