Posts Tagged ‘ Sahara ’

SUPER ONZE DE GAO: The takamba champions of the Niger bend.

April 1, 2011
Super 11 de Gao

They say that takamba has its origins in a neighbourhood of the same name situated on the edge of the small town of Témera, up-river north of Gao, on the road to Bourem. Its driving force is the unmistakable takamba rhythm which pulses on the boom and bip before lurching at the end of...
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GADDAFI AND THE TOUAREG: Love, hate and petro-dollars

March 16, 2011

Gaddafi has been buying the affections and fighting skills of the nomadic tribes of the Sahara for a long time. His vision of a borderless Islamic republic of the Sahara, struck a chord with the Touareg who have been fighting their own rebellion against the governments of Mali and Niger since independence back in...
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ETRAN FINATAWA – The nomad alliance of Niger

March 10, 2011
Etran Finatawa

The word ‘nomad’ might make us dream about freedom, but in the southern Sahara it actually describes a man locked in a pitiless and epic struggle against drought, locusts and oblivion. The scrubland of the Azawak, an immense and table-flat plain in the northwestern corner of Niger, is home to two nomadic peoples,...
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Rhissa Ag Ogham RIP

January 28, 2011
Rhissa Ag Ogham

I just learned that Rhissa Ag Ogham, one time guitarist  and singer with the Touareg group Terakaft, died in a car accident a week ago.   Apparently he was driving back to Tamanrasset from Libya with his father, who also died in the accident.  Rhissa toured Europe with Terakaft back in 2007 and 2008, and...
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The Rough Guide to the Music of the Sahara

January 27, 2011
Rough Guide to the Music of the Sahara

In terms of music and culture, the Sahara is like an inland sea, where the sounds, tastes and colours of peripheral ‘port’ cities like Marrakesh, Sijilmassa, Timbuktu, Agadez, Ghardaia, In Salah, Ghat, Ghadames, Tunis, Tripoli, Siwa, Cairo, Walata, Chinguetti, Djenné and Kano have mingled for centuries.
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Translating Touareg Poetry

January 20, 2011
Ousmane Tamikrest

I’ve been busy translating the lyrics for the forthcoming album by Tamikrest, the band from north eastern Mali lead by the talented Ousmane Ag Moussa. If you don’t know them already check out their existing album ‘Adagh’. One thing I always suspected but now know for sure is that Ousmane is a really excellent...
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TAMIKREST – The coalition, the knot, the future

January 20, 2011
Tamekrist - New Touareg guitar music

“As far as I’m concerned, it’s Tinariwen who created the path,” declares Ousmane Ag Mossa, frizzy-locked leader of Tamikrest, in a pre-emptive strike against a thousand inevitable questions. “But the way I see it, if younger bands don’t come through, then Touareg music will eventually die. They created the path and now it’s...
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KEL INEDAN – The Touareg blacksmiths

January 12, 2011
Touareg artisan in Assaghan Association workshops, Tamanrasset.  (c) Andy Morgan

This is an extract from a pamphlet / article / short book (fate will delete as applicable) that I’m writing about the Touareg blacksmith or artisan. It’s a complex subject and I’m approaching in my usual journalistic and non-academic way. This is bound to ruffle some scholarly feathers…an enjoyable sport in itself. I’m writing...
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FESTIVAL IN THE DESERT #2 – Hope through music

January 10, 2011
Festival Security in 2003.  (c) Kate Morgan.

That’s why the Festivals in the Desert are so important. They give a region previously ravaged by conflict and insecurity the chance to show a peaceful face to the world. They give the chance for the Touareg to prove that far from being bandits, they are a simply another African people...
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TINARIWEN – Sons of the desert

January 6, 2011

When Tinariwen launch into one of their songs on one of their good nights, I’m immediately transported to the place they come from. My nostrils prick up to the smell of tea, tobacco and gasoline. The pentatonic drone of the music rolls out the endless line of the desert horizons. The...
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