Biography

Native of Burkinabe parents, Minata spent her childhood in the north of Abidjan, the capital of The Ivory Coast, with her mother who was alone to take care of her fifteen children.

Coming from a poor family, Minata could not go to school and had to help her mother to work in the fields, for coffee and cocoa picking, in order to support the family. As it was a seasonal job, she had to find a solution for the rest of the year. It is around the age of seven that Minata started as a “little hand” in street restaurants. She also sold fresh water in the alleys of Anyama to passers-by, and did the housework in wealthy families to earn some money. By doing so, she saw pictures on TV for the first time and discovered Ernesto Djedje, Aicha Koné, Tshala Muana and so many other artists, who will awaken in her the desire to dance, to sing and to be part of the wonderful world of music. Minata found her vocation at that moment.

After the death of her maternal grandmother, Minata went with her mother to Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso‘s second largest city and cultural city.

They stayed in the Bolomakoté district, the musicians’s headquarter, where Minata met Paco Yé and Mahama Konaté, the founders of Farafina, a group of traditional artistic music. The magic of the sounds operated on Minata who decided to stay in Bolomakoté. As soon as she got settled, she made some new friends. One of them had travelled to Europe and let her listen to international artists, through audiocassettes. Thanks to this she discovered Tracy Chapman and her musical universe, her unusual voice with warm colours, her melancholic sounds, her sweet and sincere songs. It was love at first sight.

After a while, Minata met a Belgian who brought her to Brussels in 1994. As soon as she got settled, she enrolled in a school to learn to read and to write, and got her basic study certificate in two years. Afterwards, she took classical music and singing lessons for four years as well as classical guitar lessons for seven years at the Academy. From 1999, she also worked as a dental assistant. Minata devoted all her free time to her passion, composed melodies, wrote songs, sang and played the guitar. And so she became a singer-songwriter. Her texts are written in French and in Jula (pronounced “dioula”), her mother tongue.

In 2006, one of her demos gave her the opportunity to participate to “The 13th African Fortnight” at Espace Delvaux. Minata played also the support act of Angélique Kidjo‘s concert at Ancienne Belgique, on September 30, 2007. She was then heard on the radio show “The World is a Village”, and her song “Les Hazards de la Vie” was selected for the compilation Francophonies 2008.

She was then contacted to participate in October 2008 to the festival “Passion Franco” in Canada. She played on two major stages: the Capitol Theater in Moncton and the Palais Montcalm in Quebec City.

Back in Brussels, Minata passed an audition and was selected to play in the Belgian metro where she met the passers-by in the main alley of the Central Station metro.

In 2010, she made a demo album which allowed her to go on a small tour with the EuroMed MusicFestival. She performed on stage in Budapest, Hungary, Belgrade, Serbia, and Katowice in Poland.

In July, she took part in the Sfinks Mundial Festival and the Sfinks Mixed Festival.

For the closing of the Millenium Festival on June 14, 2011, Minata was invited to sing on stage, accompanied by a guest of honor, Baaba Maal.

She participated to the 18th African Night at the Provincial Domain of Bois des Rêves in June and the Esperanzah Festival in August.

At the end of 2011, her mother died in Africa. Minata paused in her musical activities.

Minata then gave some concerts, but was not satisfied with the pop-rock aspect of her songs. She then rewrote the artistic line of her music, which is now oriented French song with afro and blues accents. She made new arrangements, wrote new songs and in March 2016, she released a new demo including many texts in French.