Mali Blues

Cinema Documentary, 90min, 2015

Production: Gebrüder Beetz Filmproduktion [Brothers Beetz Film Production]
Director: Lutz Gregor
Studio Mitte: Sounddesign: Daniel Piechotka, Color Grading Facilities, Colorist: Claudia Gittel, DCP and Mastering

About the film
‘Mali Blues’ is a documentary about the musical history of Mali and the perilous situation of the music scene in African countries.
Director Lutz Gregor accompanies Fatoumata Diawara, a young representative of Mali’s music scene, on a journey through the history of the blues and jazz in her homeland. The two musical styles have stamped their mark on the West African country’s cultural identity. Many people even claim that the birthplace of today’s jazz and blues is here. Because of this, musicians in Mali enjoy a great prestige.
But radical Islamists threaten musicians like Bassekou Kouyaté – a master of the ngoni (an ancient, traditional lute) and a griot (storyteller) – and the rapper Ahmed Ag Kaedi, who refuse to let their freedom of expression be curtailed by anyone. Can reconciliation come to the land through the power of music?

MALI BLUES has been nominated for Best Documentary, out of a total of 113 submissions, in the 2017 German Documentary Film Awards.
The reasoning behind the pre-jury’s decision? A visually striking film about the fundamentally connecting power of music. A statement against fundamentalism and a homage to the cradle of the blues. Politically highly topical and at the same time a feast for the eye and ear.

Festivals and Awards
Toronto International Filmfestival 2016
Raindance Filmfestival 2016
Filmfest München 2016
Visions du Réel 2016
Dubai International Filmfestival 2016