Fatoumata Diawara's Stirring Reminder Of The Global Migrant Crisis : All Songs Considered The latest video from Malian singer and guitarist Fatoumata Diawara, for the song "Nterini," opens with a simple but stark reminder that hundreds of millions of people have been displaced.
NPR logo Fatoumata Diawara's Stirring Reminder Of The Global Migrant Crisis

Fatoumata Diawara's Stirring Reminder Of The Global Migrant Crisis

The latest video from Malian singer and guitarist Fatoumata Diawara, for the song "Nterini," opens with a simple but stark reminder: "In a world of seven billion people, one billion are migrants." The Pew Research Center puts the number at a quarter of a billion — a figure that's still shockingly high.

"My love has gone far away and may never come back," Diawara sings. "He has left his family and friends behind and gone away / He may never come back / What am I to do? He was my friend and my confidant."

The video, directed by the Ethiopian artist Aïda Muluneh, follows a young man as he crosses the desert, a single bag of belongings slung over his shoulder. Though he's left behind a woman he loves and his family, he's gone in search of a better life. By the end, his family receives news of his journey — it isn't good. It's a subtle, affecting reminder of the global migration crisis.

"Nterini," which means "My Love/Confidant," is from Diawara's just-announced album FENFO, due out May 18 on Shanachie. It's her followup to 2011's debut full-length Fatou.