Laye Sow

Blues, Musical Artist

1963 –


Who is Laye Sow?

Abdoulaye "Laye" Sow is a Senegalese singer, songwriter and guitarist.

Laye Sow learned his trade working in the Gambia in the hotels.

For 8 years Laye became a resident musician at 'Faulty Towers' hotel in Gambia, where in 2003 he met with Steve Marshall which led to a change in musical direction and the formation of the musical group 'Jelitara Futa.' This short successful collaboration resulted in two albums 'Mami' followed by 'Djamano'. The album 'Djamano' was a collaboration with the English blues guitarist Richard Caswell. Unsurprisingly this music has reached the 'Sahara Blues of the Desert' and 'Acoustic Africa' compilations.

"An addictive new find – it's rare to hear such a perfect combination of voice and guitar – Laye Sow is surely one of the best young Senegalese singers, and Richard Caswell frames each song with guitar arrangements that feel satisfyingly apt" — Charlie Gillet, BBC Radio.

So what makes Laye's music so different from other more famous musicians including Baaba Maal,and Daby Balde who like Laye belong to the Fula ethnic group of West Africa? The origins of these people can be traced from the Pharaohs of Egypt to nomadic tribes in Ethiopia. Laye can trace his family history directly to the Dogan in Mali, a culture steeped in the arts, music and dancing. For many visitors today this place seems like paradise on earth but life here is hard, and with no way of recording events the stories of the ancestors are passed down through the generations through song and story telling.

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Jan 12, 1963
Also known as
  • Sow, Laye
  • Senegal

on July 23, 2013


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