Anqelique Kidjo


SYDNEY — Anqelique Kidjo sang to a packed Metro last week. For two solid hours this charismatic African diva had the enthusiastic crowd dancing and singing — even though most of Kidjo's songs are in Fon, her native Beninois language. Fifa, which means peace, is Kidjo's latest album. It was inspired by her return home last year to the west African country Benin where, under difficult conditions, she and partner Jean Hebrail recorded traditional music. Like her other albums, Fifa (Mango through Polygram) combines traditional with modern to produce Kidjo's unique style. As Kidjo put it: "Some call it Afro-funk; you can call it whatever you like. But really, it's hard to put my music into one category. Even when I use my own traditional music, I'm not trying to recreate just one style, I mix it all up." Perhaps this, and her infectious optimism about humanity, are why Kidjo has such broad appeal. — Pip Hinman

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