We want to showcase two musical efforts to help people displaced by violence in northern Mali. It’s estimated that more than 200,000 people have been forced to flee the region since militants and hard-line Islamists staged an uprising there.
Tomorrow in New York there’s going to be a concert to benefit some of those who’ve fled. It’s dubbed “Musicians for Mali.”
One of the organizers is Banning Eyre, senior editor at afropop.org. He says the unrest in northern Mali is affecting the Malian community in New York.
Eyre personally knows one musician whose family has been displaced. She’s a singer from Timbuktu named Khaira Arby.
Eyre says, “the last time I saw her a couple of months ago in New York, she was in a real state of dispair. People in her family and band were being forced to flee their homes. She was talking about homes being invaded and being attacked.”
There are many other Malian musicians affected by the unrest in their country, though. The band Tadalat is from a town in northern Mali that was among the first places captured by militants earlier this year. Their music is part of the second aid effort we want to tell you about. It’s a compilation CD called “Songs for Desert Refugees.”
Like the concert in New York, proceeds from the CD go to groups helping those displaced by the violence in northern Mali.
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