Tuareg guitarist and singer Omara "Bombino" Moctar has recorded a new album with producer Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys, which will be released in early 2013 on Nonesuch Records. Bombino and his band traveled to Nashville over the summer to record in Auerbach's Easy Eye Sound in Nashville. Further details about the album and its release will be announced shortly, as will upcoming festival and tour dates.
Born and raised in Niger, in and around the northern city of Agadez, Bombino is a member of the Tuareg Ifoghas tribe, a nomadic people descended from the Berbers of North Africa; for centuries they have fought against colonialism and the imposition of strict Islamic rule.
The Tuareg people have fought the Niger government to secure their rights on numerous occasions, causing Bombino and his family to flee several times. During one such exile, relatives visiting from the front lines of the rebellion left behind a guitar and Bombino began teaching himself to play it. He eventually studied with the renowned Tuareg guitarist Haja Bebe, who asked him to join his band, where he acquired the nickname Bombino—a variation on the Italian word for "little child."
While living in Algeria and Libya in his teen years, Bombino's friends played him videos of Jimi Hendrix and Mark Knopfler, among others, which they watched over and over in an effort to master their licks. Bombino worked regularly as a musician and also as a herder in the desert near Tripoli, spending many hours alone watching the animals and practicing his guitar. Eventually, Bombino returned to Niger, where he continued to play with a number of local bands. As his legend grew, a Spanish documentary film crew helped Bombino record his first album, Group Bombino's Guitars from Agadez Vol. 2, which became a local radio hit.
In 2009, Bombino met filmmaker Ron Wyman, who had heard a cassette of Bombino's music while traveling near Agadez. Wyman was enchanted by Bombino's music and spent a year seeking him out, eventually tracking him down to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, where he was in exile after two band members were killed in a rebellion. (The Tuaregs have since put down their arms and returned to Niger.) Wyman featured Bombino in a documentary he was filming about the Tuareg and also produced his 2011 solo album, Agadez.
NPR Music says Bombino's Agadez had "some of the most sublime guitar licks you'll hear in 2011. The songs ... combine the best traits of Saturday nights and Sunday mornings, mixing killer solos with delicate repetition. The most magical moments come when Bombino finishes a verse—all sung in the Tuareg language of Tamasheq—and begins to lose himself in his guitar. You can't help but follow him down."
Rooted in the sweaty dance floor revivals that have defined their live shows over the past five years, Brooklyn’s 8-piece Afro-funk-hoppers mamarazzi serve up a deliciously greasy dish with spices cultivated from across the planet. Spontaneously combusting under the careless scientific supervision of a group of Wesleyan University (MGMT, Das Racist, Santigold, etc) alumni, mamarazzi has since been on its perpetual quest to leave no genre behind and no hip unshaken. The band likens its sound to a laced grapefruit: tart funk, acidic groove, pulp-n-rind hiphop, and nectar of ancient lullaby. Think of an orgy with Fela Kuti, Thom York, Maceo Parker and Lauryn Hill. Then stop thinking about that.
Underground Horns is a Brooklyn based brass band playing Afro Funk Bhangra
New Orleans grooves and beyond. AllAboutJazz called their 2009 debut record
FUNK MONK "kick-ass dance music.that brushes up against psychedelia.with
shots of funky brass juice."
In 2010 they recorded their second album BIG BEAT which was reviewed by Ken
Waxman in The New York Jazz Record calling them "an unapologetic party band
with brains...with tonal inflections from the Big Easy, central Africa, the
Maghreb and the Baltic states."