January 4th, 2013 on Saturday night was a thrilling moment in the country’s entertainment industry as thousands of fans and dignitaries both within and outside The Gambia flocked to the Sahel Fitness Center in Bijilo for the much anticipated twin album launching of The Gambia’s ‘kora king’ and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Jaliba Kuyateh. Titled ‘Alin ntujeh’ and ‘Woli Sabo’, each album contains eight beautiful sound tracks. Among the guests at the musical concert included the technical adviser to the Senegalese House of Parliament, Ms Maimuna Jallow, also a former Miss Senegal; prominent Senegalese comedian and TV show host, Kouthia and rising Senegalese singer, Queen Biz.
‘Woli Sabo’ literally meaning three saints, gives a picture of how one should learn to endure to maintain peace in society as well as learn to accept, forgive and be friendly to each other. For the second one, ‘Ali ntujeh’, it is a love song, which literally is trying to underline the fact that “love is blind.”
The grand launching, that was qualified as “successful” came hard on the heels of months of musical tour of the wider Europeby Jaliba and his Kumareh Band, availing them the opportunity to strengthen their support base.
Saturday night’s launching was described by many as one of itskind in that the place was virtually full to the brim. For thepast three years, Jaliba had been organising his launching at the Senegambia Gardens, but this year, he moved the venue to a more spacious place – Sahel Fitness Center – in an attempt to cater for the increased fan base. But to his surprised, the place was almost filled to capacity, thus meaning that future concerts by the kora maestro will require him to stage it at a place more spacious than this year’s venue.
Delighted by the positive response by supports, Jaliba could only say “Thank God” for what he called the “love shown to him” by people. He thanked them for the support and prayed for God to reward them. Similar words were expressed by the manager of the Kumareh Band, Lamin Camara, who thanked Gambians within and outside; notably those from Norway, Sweden, Finland and the entire Europe and America in general for travelling all the way to The Gambia to attend the launching of the twin albums. He also commended the fans and various groups for their support and encouragement, acknowledging that every year they come in their numbers to support them.
Camara thanked the sponsors of the event for their support, while pledging Jaliba and the Band’s commitment to always deliver the best to the people.
Representing The Gambia’s minister of Tourism and Culture, the deputy permanent secretary, Codou Jabang congratulated Jaliba and the Kumareh Band for the latest work, saying the Tourism and Culture Ministry is delighted to be associated with the launching. She also commended Jaliba’s sponsors and fans for the support, while informing that her minister had pledged to purchase 10 CDs of the two albums that have been launched.
The event wrapped up at some minutes after 5am on Sunday morning after the Kumareh Band played all the 16 new sound tracks.
Our interview from Jaliba´s last visit in Sweden in october 2013 you will find HERE!