Thursday, March 10, 2005

Rebel Music

lzz gave me a CD of stunning music from Western Sahara: Tinariwen. Singing in Arabic, French, and several other languages, with an equally eclectic mix of styles: hip hip, reggae, jazz, blues, fused with African and Arabic rhythms.

With no postal or phone system to carry messages of resistance, Tinriwen's music became the underground telephone for the rebellion. Their sung poetry calls for the political awakening of consciousness and approaches the problems of the exile, of the repression in Mali, of the policy of their people's expulsion to Algeria and of the claims for sovereignty and self-determination.

Their cassettes were banned in Mali and Algeria and anyone carrying a recording risked bodily harm by the authorities.

AND they have cool desert headgear...


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