Niariu offers a sociological reflection on romance in the early 21st century, filled with her own desires and uncertainties. “Sun” is the first single from her debut EP, Story of a Sad Mermaid.
In the video for “Sun,” Niariu evokes the ambivalent emotions felt during a relationship, caught between self-abandonment, vulnerability and the need to protect herself. Dressed in white, the singer from the group Les Amazones d’Afrique goes solo with this track, announcing her first EP, Story of a Sad Mermaid, a mix of soul, hip-hop, electronic music, reggae, R&B and melodies from Bayaka culture. Niariu is at peace with the spiritual heritage passed down from her Fulani and Muslim family. Having worked on this project since 2007, the Amazonian received guidance from Americans Saul Williams and Taphari.
From an early age, Tiguidanké Diallo was nicknamed “Niariu,” which means “cat” in Fulani, referring to her unpredictable nature, which is seen as mischievous and multifaceted. The cat has a bad reputation in Guinea and Niariu reclaims the nickname, refusing to be swayed by social convention. Her hybrid identity is central to who she is and she is influenced by both her native Parisian culture and her Guinean roots as well as her travels to the United States with family.
Story of a sad mermaid is scheduled for release in October 2021.