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Yoff - Meeting the singer Ndir Mbengue

Another one of the meetings was with a group of musicians who use instruments built from  recycled waste materials. Daouda Mbengue is a singer and artist, better known as NDIR. Born in 1962 in Yoff, this Lebou artist is well-known for using recycled materials of everyday life as instruments, fuel containers, metal trays and spoons etc., very much in the tradition of African slaves, who were shipped to the Caribbean and the Americas from the Island of Gorée during the 16th to the 19th century. Through a mixture of Lebou rythm and a specific dance choreography like "ndawrabine" and the "goumbe", the group promotes the traditional Lebou music and plays regularly at the Socio-Cultural Centre of Yoff, in the occasion of the festival of the peoples of water in Yoff (Festival des peuples de l'eau) and also in Europe.


In 1999 NDIR MBENGUE came out with his first album. Among others, he also produced a documentary film on the clandestine immigration entitled "Yonnu Guedje" in collaboration with the committee fighting clandestine immigration. Most unfortunately, our visit coincided with the passing away of a close family member, so that Ndir Mbengue limited himself to simply introducing the musicians of his group "Khandirane", Jazz, as well as explaining the origin of the materials transformed into instruments. His album is available on YOUTUBE. Click on the video for the music and the dance choreography (video).


Ndir Mbengue presents Souleymane Seck (in white outfit) and Omar Seck (with violet shirt). Souleymane's instrument is a drum called 'thiole' with a body of recycled material. Omar plays on a large metal tray with spoons. The drum to the left used to be a plastic container for oil.



See the explanations live on YouTube (video).





The next picture shows Souleymane Seck's instrument, the thiole, in a close up. In the background the metal tray of Omar Seck placed for better resonance on a big box.










The photo to the right shows other members of the group - more drummers.






The different get togethers have been documented through photos and videos. The wealth of material will take some time to digest and will then be made available in greater detail.