By an almost incredible coincidence and despite her young age Fatoumata Diawara already had the chance to dabble in the world of dance (in her father's traditional dance group), film (a world in which she was introduced by her aunt) and of course music (Jean-Louis Courcoult, director of the renowned French theatre company Royal de Luxe, heard her singing backstage one day). Fatou took her first steps in music as a backing vocalist for Dee Dee Bridgewater and Oumou Sangare and it was the latter who finally gave her the push she needed to record an album of her own for the renowned World Circuit label. Those who expect 'Fatou' to be a classic Mali blues album will be sadly disappointed though; Fatoumata Diawara is a young singer-songwriter reminiscent of female artists from her generation like Rokia Traore or Dobet Gnahore. 'Fatou' sounds fresh, sometimes funky ('Bakonoba') and in her lyrics Fatoumata is not too diffident to broach sensitive issues: 'Sowa' is about the tradition that allows financially less well-off parents to pass their children onto a family member (something Fatoumata experienced firsthand as she was sent to live with one of her aunts), 'Moussou' shows a dash of African feminism and of course the mutilating practice of female circumcision ('Boloko') is also tackled. That being said, most of the songs on 'Fatou' are about the difficulties a young Malian girl experiences just trying to be herself ('Sonkolon', 'Alama', 'Bissa') and, of course, the album also contains an ode to her musical mother Oumou Sangare ('Makoun Oumou'). We predict Fatoumata Diawara a very bright future!