Boubacar ‘Kar Kar’ Traore has been compared with a number of greats in pop music. Elvis Presley had to act as a comparison as did Robert Johnson, Johnny Hallyday or Chuck Berry. And his music is titled as blues – all of these are comparisons which indicate that it is practically impossible to define kar Kar’s songs. Above all, such comparisons are used by us Europeans or Americans to make an artist who is a musical world of his own understandable.
Kar Kar does what he always wanted to do : music. For him, they are melodies, songs, to which his instrument the guitar sings the second vocal part. You can hear his origins from the west of Mali : Kayes, home and yearning all at once.The love of this home country and its inhabitants is great, even if he does sometimes criticize its administrators or his compatriots with harsh words. Forty hard years of living with plenty of deprivations are woven into the calm stories of his songs, but warmth and love make up the fundamental tones.
Boubacar Traoré is not a musician whose songs you can explain, whose images and moods you have to analyze, you have to expose yourself to them. Perhaps then you will experience an Africa beyond clichés and prejudices.