There seems to be a lot of miscommunication about Zap Mama's fourth album, A Ma Zone, put out on Luaka Bop in 1999. I have read in many sources, that this is the first of their albums to include instrumental sounds, and the male voice. Having recently purchased 7, their third album, complete with no entirely a cappella songs, and various male voices (including Michael Franti of Spearhead), I must disagree.

Regardless of this confusion, however, the album does mark a departure from the more rootsy, folksy sounds previously attributed to the group. More electronic sounds are found on this one, and the entire album was mixed digitally on Pro Tools. While this isn't the first professional CD I've heard mixed with this software, it is the first professional CD mixed by this method that I thought sounded good, nay ... great.

Two notable guest on the album are Black Thought from The Roots, and Speech from Arrested Development. One of the songs on the album was in Mission Impossible 2, but does not appear on the movie's soundtrack, and I can't recall which song it is.

The songs:

  1. Rafiki (Daulne, Daulne, Richmond)
  2. W'happy Mama (Daulne, Daulne)
  3. Call Waiting (Daulne)
  4. Gissié (Daulne)
  5. Songe (Daulne)
  6. Kemake (Aningi, Daulne, Daulne)
  7. Comment Ca Va? (Daulne)
  8. Ya Solo (Aningi, Daulne)
  9. My Own Zero (Daulne)
  10. M'Toto (Daulne, Speech)
  11. Gbo Mata (Station) (Aning, Daulne)
  12. 'Allo 'Allo (Daulne)

Marie Dualne spoke about the meaning behind the album's title in a CDNow interview. She mentioned it's three meanings: freedom warrior, "in my zone," and "in the zone." To her, the album represents a "fight for good vibes and inspiration from the sounds of nature."

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