Issa Bagayogo is from the country and his first and foremost a peasant. Born in 1961 in Korin, a small village 65 kilometres from Bougouni (home town of Nahawa Doumbia, the region’s best known singer), Issa used to hoe millet (daba in bambara) in a ten hectare field with the family of father and his father’s four wives. As the son of his father’s first wife, Issa lived along with fifteen of his children. In all, some twenty people lived in the field.
On the musical front, Issa first learned to play the daro, a sort of rustic iron bell that used to be rung noisilly behind farm workers to goad them into action. At the age of 12 ? he began learning the kamele n’goni (the young Malian’s guitar) as well as singing (a bit like everybody there’s always a kamele n’goni lying around somwhere).
Read the rest on his site.