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I'll Sing For You

DIRECTED BY - Jacques Sarasin

This documentary, presented by Jonathan Demme (STOP MAKING SENSE), paints a low-key, entrancing portrait of African guitar legend Boubacar Traore, known to his countrymen as Karkar, a musician who regularly stirred the spirits of listeners on the radio and the dance floor during the early 1960s after Mali achieved independence. Unfortunately he never received royalties, and had to work other jobs to support his family. With the death of his wife, Traore wen to Paris to work as a laborer and disappeared from the music scene for decades until he was rediscovery by European music fans.The documentary includes plenty of interviews, but it's mostly songs; old ones encouraging the Mali youth to band together and work to build their new country, and new ones affirming his Muslim faith and mourning the loss of loved ones. They're all poignant and breathtakingly lovely, and he plays them to spellbound African locals as he visits various parts of his homeland. A performance in a celebratory concert serves as the grande finale. Filmmaker Jacques Sarasin contrasts photos of Karkar and other young Africans celebrating their independence and dancing the twist in the early 1960s with his digital video footage of Traore exploring Mali 40 years later--a land now as subdued and quietly mournful as his beautiful, bluesy songs.