Deadsplinter Up! All Night: Away From the Light of Day

Amadou & Mariam are a musical duo from Mali.  What makes them unique, besides playing what they describe as “Malian blues”, is that they are a blind couple.  Amadou lost his vision at 16 and Mariam became blind at age 5 from untreated measles.  They met at Mali’s Institute for the Young Blind, started playing music together and fell in love.   They have recorded music since the ‘80s but a real worldwide break came for them when they met Stevie Wonder in ’86 and started playing festivals around the world.  In 2003, they were approached by Manu Chao who then produced their 2004 album Dimanche a Bamako, which he also sang and played guitar on some tracks.  This is by far my favorite album they have done.

Senegal Fast Food

this is a live recording of a great track from this same album, check out the amazing guitar work from Amadou.


Their 6th album, Welcome to Mali was nominated for a Grammy & this song, Sabali became the most-played French single worldwide in 2009.


In 2010, their joint autobiography “Away From the Light of Day” was published and traces their early story, Amadou overcoming and accepting blindness, finding joy in music, falling in love and sharing a passion for music and life.   Since then, they have played alongside Alicia Keys, John Legend, Santigold, U2, and TV on the Radio and are one of Africa’s most successful acts.

Here’s another track that you can hear why they call themselves “Malian blues”, Chantez Chantez

Chantez Chantez

Let’s hope we can all find the personal peace and success they have achieved in life while overcoming all life’s obstacles.   Thanks for supporting DUAN.



  1. Dutch band, I can’t remember if farscythe has posted them before. They sound a lot like the Velvet Underground. 

    Lewsberg – Cold Light of Day



    If retro low fi isn’t your thing

    St. Vincent – Northern Lights


    • oh man….i got out localed by a furriner….ive really dropped the ball in my old age
      first time ive heard them actually….i like
      anyhoo…i miss having seedy little record stores around….missing out on so much nowadays

  2. I’ve listened to a lot of their music over the years but somehow never picked up that they were blind.
    But anyway, great headliners for DUAN, people need to fill their earholes with their music right now.

    • I sang this song as a little kid & my sisters would get pissed at my butchering of the lyric about “wrapped up like a douche-n”. I didn’t understand or know the real lyrics for at least another 10 years.  Maybe misunderstood lyrics should be a future DUAN?

      • I was thinking this exact thing when I posted it…for one…I didn’t know if it would be appropriate  on account of the people being blind, but it had blind and light in it.  and two…i STILL don’t know the words…

        “wrapped up like a douche and a loner in the night” always felt like i was being personally attacked LOL

        …and the misinterpreted lyrics would be a great DUAN. I was thinking of doing a “song i hate” duan on which we could hate-post our most hated songs.

  3. Wow, outstanding, @loveshaq. I’m vaguely familiar with Chao, but not these guys. Amadou looks like he is killing it on a stock(ish) Fender or Squier Telecaster, which would be refreshingly cool.
    Continuing with the good vibes. From their album “See the Light”.


    • This is great @MemeWeaver ! Manu Chao’s Esperanza album is one of my favorite all time recordings.  When I first played it for my brother, Manu instantly became his favorite artist.

  4. They’re so great. Traditional music from Mali has this dream like quality that I find mesmerizing. A&M do a great job mixing it with “western” genres.

    Balassama – Kandia Kouyaté

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