Alpha Yaya Diallo

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For the Malian drummer, see Yaya Diallo.
Alpha Yaya Diallo
Alpha Yaya Diallo.jpg
Background information
Born Guinea-Conakry
Origin Senegal
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter
Instruments Vocals, guitar

Alpha Yaya Diallo is a Guinean-born self-taught guitarist, singer, and songwriter,[1] who lives in Vancouver.[2]


Diallo was born in Guinea-Conakry and when young moved about the country following the job moves of his father, a surgeon. A portion of his mother's family lived in Senegal, which gave him a rich musical education.[2] In Africa he taught himself to play the guitar, and worked with several Guinean groups such as The Sons of Ra'is and Syli Authentique.

Diallo moved to Europe in the mid-1980s, where he worked particularly with the Fatala group associated with Peter Gabriel's music label.[2]

In 1991 Diallo moved to Vancouver,[2] and in 1993 released his solo first album, Nene, which was nominated for a Juno award, as was his 1996 album Futur. He won his first Juno, for The Message in 1999 in the "Best World Music Album" category. He received further Junos in 2002 (for The Journey) and in 2004 with the African Guitar Summit compilation. He released Djama in 2005.[2]

Diallo incorporates Guinea's rich musical tradition into his original compositions. He won the Best World Artist-Solo at the inaugural Canadian Folk Music Awards in 2006.[3]

He produced a film documentary entitled Best of Both Worlds, which was filmed in West Africa, Canada and France.[4]

He plays with Ghanaian guitarist Pa Joe Diallo, Adam Solomo and Mighty Popo in African Guitar Summit.[4]


  • 1993: Néné (Bafing Productions) – nominated for a Juno Award
  • 1996: Futur (Bafing Productions) – nominated for a Juno Award
  • 1998: The Message (Bafing Productions) – won a Juno Award in Best Global Album category
  • 2001: The Journey (Jericho Beach Music) – won a 2002 Juno Award in Best Global Album category
  • 2004: African Guitar Summit (CBC Recordings) collaboration – won a 2005 Juno Award in Best World Music Album category
  • 2005: Djama (Jericho Beach Music) – nominated for a Juno Award[4]
  • 2010: Immé (Jericho Beach Music)


  1. ^ "Diallo kicks off concert series". 1 September 2011. Retrieved 7 January 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Alpha Yaya Diallo". Festival International Nuits d'Afrique de Montréal. 2011. Retrieved 7 January 2012. 
  3. ^ Greg Quill, "Signs of strength in roots music; Great Big Sea ushered in Maritime revival", Toronto Star, 5 January 2006.
  4. ^ a b c Graham Rockingham (23 February 2006). "Diallo singing for his people in Africa". Retrieved 7 January 2012. 

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