We’ve been in a throwback mood lately, and Seydina Insa Wade (pronounced Saydeena Ansa Waad) is just the thing for such a mood, in our opinion! If you’re not familiar, here’s your chance to meet this a monument of modern Senegalese music.
Seydina was a songwriter whose lyrics and melodies had influenced all of Senegal’s major artists. Echoes of his work can be seen in that of Youssou N’Dour, Baaba Maal, Ismael Lo, Les Freres Guissé, Pape and Cheikh, and more recently a new generation of rappers including his nephew El Hadji Man of the group Daara J. Even though the legendary man passed from this world in 2012, he still lives on through the influence of his music, and those who have chosen to follow him. He was an international hit, and was known the world over. Despite this, several people in the Western world may not have heard his name, but his music is undoubtedly important for many genres and artists.
He’s a man who has an extremely storied career. In 1966, Seydina and one of his groups, Calypso, made their debut appearance at the famous Festival Des Arts Nègres organised in by President Léopold Sédar Senghor, which welcomed musicians and artists from the diaspora. Seydina established himself as the pioneering voice of Senegalese folk music sung in Wolof. His lyrics raised controversial social issues that were prevalent at that time such as circumcision and slavery. But the songs including his early hit “Khandiou” were also charming portraits of Senegalese life and its people, sung with style and humour. Said style and humour can still be yours today, thanks to the magic of the internet – his entire catalogue is available on Spotify and all other major online retailers and streaming services!
That’s just the beginning of Seydina’s stories, however. We haven’t even covered his group TABALA, which was an acoustic trio featuring Oumar Sow and Idrissa Diop, which took the early 1980s by storm! Those who attended their innovative shows agree there has not been an acoustic group to equal them before or since. For other high points in Seydina’s career and the rest of his info, there’s no better place to check than his bio, which you can see by clicking here.
From the mbalax rhythms of “Mag du Caaxaan” to the dance grooves of “Ginkgo Biloba”, Seydina moves with the times to create memorable tunes and audacious arrangements which assure him his rightful place in the galaxy of contemporary Senegalese stars. May he live on through his influential and magnificent work!
Seydina Insa Wade is a Blue Pie Records USA artist and is published by Blue Pie Publishing USA (ASCAP).