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Jaliba Kuyateh "King of The Kora"

The artist Jaliba Kuyateh, often known as the "King of The Kora", has made the ancient and very traditional Mande music of the Mandinka into what is sometimes called kora pop. The Kora maestro with his group, the Kumareh Band, continues to unite the old and modern worlds with his exciting, uplifting performances. Jaliba, who can trace his roots back to Mali, began playing the 21-stringed instrument early in life at the tender age of five.

In 1979 he formed a traditional band called the Jaliba & Group. The group soon got big fame, and songs like "Tesito Be Gambia " and "Kaira Silo Mang jara fa" (the road to peace is never too long) shone the torch-light on them.

While he continued to play with his band, Kuyateh began working with the Ministry of Education, youth, sports, and culture following his graduation in 1991. Kuyateh's love of music proved irresistible. Within a year, he voluntarily retired from his government job and turned his full-time attention to music. The group's success came quickly. In addition to touring France in 1993 and Spain, Kuyateh & his group released their debut album, "Radio Kantang", in 1993. The album sold more than 15,000 copies.

On the 4th July 2007 Jaliba was awarded a certificate of recognition from the Brufut Marathon Run Association (BMRA) for his outstanding contribution in promoting Gambia culture through music Kora.

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