Afternoon Lovely People,

I hope you all had a lovely Valentine’s Day and got suitably spoiled by your other half.

We seemed to neglect the fact that it was Valentine’s Day on the blog last week and didn’t mention it in any of our posts! Whoops. Not too good for a wedding blog eh!?

To make up for it I have a very beautiful African love song to share with you all for today’s Independent Love Song.

Written and sung by the incredible Malian singer, songwriter and guitarist Rokia Traore, M’bifo (Thank You) is an inspiring love song written to celebrate Rokia’s husbands birthday.

The lyrics (translated below) are just beautiful and are, in my opinion, such a true representation of love and marriage. Couple them with Rokia’s graceful and passionate voice and the simple acoustic guitar, and you have a love song that really is a thing of beauty. I could listen to it all day. In fact all of her songs are a pleasure to listen too with their insightful and poetic lyrics and her magical voice which invites you to stop, breathe and listen.

If you are looking for a song for your first dance then this is a very special one for you to consider….

It is true that united we stand
Thank you my beloved
Whatever happens you are by my side,
From the time of my solitude and my fears,
I kept a distant memory.
Now I’m strong from your support.
Your presence makes me brighter.

I still remember my sad thoughts.
When I watched these couples
Crumbling under the weight of their union.
Men and women for whom
The union becomes a straitjacket.

“Loneliness guarantees me a better life”,
I told myself.

I would not have to bear the sweet bitterness
That installs in couples over time.
So I could not live these love stories.
Union, never bitter.

These sad thoughts are far behind
By your side, I reached a milestone.
When things go wrong.
We left.
Spread the word
When one is happy.

Thank you my love, Oh thank you darling.
From the time of my solitude, I brought you an empty container
Thou hast filled with love, thou hast filled me with happiness.

If you would like to hear more from Rokia then check out her magical album Beautiful Africa. It is such a good album. N’Teri, a song off the album, is just amazing – you can listen to it here.

She also has another album called Bowmboï which is where I heard M’bifo. This album is described as being ‘an album filled with creative aspiration but still set within the framework of traditional Malian instrumentation.’ Rokia herself has described it as being “about diversity and how tolerant we have to be to be able to live with the others around us…. There is no perfect culture. The limit of the world is not the limit of our frontiers. We have to work on ourselves to understand and accept that we are not ‘the best.’ We have to realize we need ‘the other’ [in order] to be someone ourselves. I think everybody knows that without tolerance, nothing is possible. It’s easy to think and easy to speak about it, but not easy at all to be it in everyday life.”

Sounds good doesn’t it. I think you should all buy it!

Happy Monday Peeps,

Big Music Love

Laura xxx

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