Nigel Williamson | Songlines

Nigel Williamson

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Nigel Williamson has written in every issue of Songlines since #1. Previously a political correspondent on The Times, Nigel’s other passions, besides writing about music and his grandchildren, are cricket and gardening. He has also written the summaries for the artists, countries and genres on the site.

Articles by Nigel Williamson

1/28/2019 12:00:00 AM

Oliver Mtukudzi dies aged 66

From the oppressive days of white minority rule, through the liberation war and the challenges of independence that followed, his music uplifted and inspired his people

5/11/2018 12:00:00 AM

My World: Olivia Harrison

Olivia Harrison, the wife of the late Beatle George Harrison, talks about how George's collaborations with Indian musicians helped shape her own musical tastes

4/3/2018 12:00:00 AM

A to Z of World Music

World music is a maze. And what you need is a good map. So here is our A to Z of world music, taking you from Africa Express to Zimbabwe, from Balkan brass to qawwali and from cumbia to WOMAD

9/23/2021 12:00:00 AM

Fela Kuti | A Beginner’s Guide

The perfect introduction to Fela Kuti – a true original: "Never have life, politics, art and music been so inextricably linked together in one incendiary, insurrectionary and highly danceable package"

12/13/2020 12:00:00 AM

Bassekou Kouyaté: A Beginner's Guide

Simultaneously innovating and upholding the traditions of the ngoni, Bassekou Kouyaté is a name synonymous with his instrument’s modern sound. Nigel Williamson rounds up his sparkling career

4/19/2018 12:00:00 AM

Playlist: One World Duets

A Songlines playlist for Apple Music, with range of Western artists coming together with world music's brightest to create an exciting variety of new sounds.

3/12/2021 12:00:00 AM

Playlist: Quintessential Kora

A Songlines playlist for Apple Music exploring the many and varied uses of this iconic instrument of West Africa

10/16/2018 12:00:00 AM

African Queens – The Essential 10

The bright star rising from West Africa in the form of Noura Mint Seymali is just one of the continent’s long and impressive list of women singers. Nigel Williamson picks ten favourite albums

10/15/2018 12:00:00 AM

Zimbabwean Albums – The Essential 10

Mokoomba might be the latest bright young band from Zimbabwe, but before them there have been some truly legendary artists and releases. Nigel Williamson selects ten classic albums

11/4/2020 12:00:00 AM

Malian Guitarists: The Essential 10

While guitarist Afel Bocoum steps out of Ali Farka Touré’s shadow and into the spotlight with his latest release Lindé, Nigel Williamson selects ten other excellent albums by Malian guitarists

3/29/2021 12:00:00 AM

Ballaké Sissoko: A Beginner's Guide

The Malian kora player has become an international star, noted for his myriad musical collaborations. Nigel Williamson examines his extensive back catalogue

9/14/2021 12:00:00 AM

Seckou Keita | A Beginner's Guide

The UK-based Senegalese kora player has made a name for himself as one of the foremost innovators operating in African music today. Nigel Williamson dives into his impressive career and marvels at his myriad works to date

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