Hailing from Mali, Amadou Bagayoko and Mariam Doumbia first met as children at Mali’s Institute for the Young Blind—both lost their vision at an early age. It was here that they began performing in the institute’s Eclipse Orchestra. Eventually, the couple got married and began recording together in the 1980s.
Over the span of three decades, Amadou (guitar and vocals) and Mariam (vocals) developed an international following, having recorded eight full-length albums and toured around the world. Their album Welcome to Mali (2008) was nominated for the Best Contemporary World Music Album at the 52nd Grammy Awards. Tour highlights for the duo include supporting U2 on their U2 360 Tour, performing at the 2010 World Cup for FIFA’s Kick-Off Celebration, and performing alongside major acts across multiple genres, such as Blur, Coldplay, and Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour, among others.
Amadou & Mariam take the basic DNA of Western pop and soul and make it jump to irresistible African rhythms, electrified by Amadou’s bluesy guitar.
—The Telegraph (UK)
Amadou & Mariam have, in the last few years, become the most popular sonic export from Mali.
—New York Daily News