Radio and Podcasts for learning Bambara

It’s hard to find any podcasts are specifically designed for Bambara learners (except this weird and not at all useful one produced by a missionary in Mali for five days). That said, there are a few quality podcasts and radio broadcasts that can be streamed to improve one’s listening skills. Most of the easiest ones to access are part of the renewed surge of Western-sponsored radio broadcasting in Bambara/Manding that has been led by France’s RFI and the US’s Voice of America.



French government radio with news in Bambara daily. Can’t be streamed from a podcast app but there website is mobile-friendly and allows for easy listening

“Kan jumɛ bɛ yɛn” [‘What’s up’]

Regular interview talk show produced by RFI-Mandenkan, which conveniently can be found in whatever app you use to get your podcasts. High quality production and sound quality that learners need. (Note that the spelling of the show’s name should be “Kan jumɛn bɛ yen?”)

Voice of America - Bambara

All of the their podcasts and RSS feeds are listed here, but below are the two main shows of interest. Additionally, all of their broadcasts are live streamed as videos via their Facebook page which means you can comment directly to the journalists while they speak.

“Mali Kura” [‘New Mali’]

Regular news show produced by the Voice of America’s Bambara service. Often has lower quality recordings and sound quality than that of RFI. Can be subscribed to via whatever podcast app you prefer.

“An Ba Fo! [‘We say it’]

A regular call-in show with listeners of the VOA’s Bambara programming. (Note that the spelling of the show’s name should be “An b’a fɔ”)

Know of any other active ones that I missed? Or are there radio stations in Mali or West Africa that you like to stream? Let me know!

[Posted updated with additional links on 2019-05-30]