UPDATE – RootsWeb sites (owned by Ancestry.com) are currently unavailable while they resolve some security issues. If and when the sites are restored, we’ll make the links live, until then, we’ve included the links in parentheses.
African American Griots (http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~afamer/) is a site dedicated to African American ancestry and a place to find African American databases.
“West African Griots are historians, storytellers, traditional praise singers and musicians. Their roles are hereditary and their surnames identify them as Griots. For example, Toumani Diabate of Mali comes from 70 generations of Griots. His father, Sidiki Diabate was considered the “King of the Kora” in Guinea, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Mali and The Gambia. When he died, memorials were held in each of these countries, attended by foreign diplomats, government officials and musicians. The most famous Griot in each of these countries was chosen to preside over the memorials and to celebrate the life of Sidiki Diabate by “singing his praises” and recounting his life story.”
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