Friday, April 15, 2016

Arbaa Experimental Chaâbi ~ Concert in Fez

Saturday night in Fez there is a special concert of experimental Chaâbi music - a collaboration between the ArbaA Experimental group and Moroccan musicians. The View From Fez caught up with the groups producer Laure-Meriem Rouvier...

Laure-Meriem Rouvier

Chaabi (الشعبي in Arabic), also known as Chaâbi, Sha-bii, or Sha'bii, refers to a popular music genre in North Africa that differs slightly from country to country - such as Algerian chaabi, Moroccan chaabi and Egyptian chaabi. Chaabi music is popular at weddings and this style is often associated with the festivals. The use of popular language and the creation of new rhythms have made this style an essential complement to the dance.

The ArbaA Experimental Chaâbi 

The ArbaA Experimental Chaâbi quartet (arbaa - Arabic four) has been around for the last decade but in its present configuration has been working together for two and a half years. For this concert they are joined by Moroccan musicians.

Saïd Idrissi, Darbuka (Percussion)
Mohammed Kadhri, Violon
Benoît Black, Saxophones, compositions
Clément Black, Drums, compositions
François Rème, Fender Rhodes, MS 20
Mathieu Picard, Bass
Léo Fabre-Cartier, Oud
Mathieu Ryo, son
Production : Laure-Meriem Rouvier for King Tao productions

What makes this an exciting experiment is the meeting between the European instrumentalists and the three key instruments of Moroccan popular and art music: the darbuka, oriental violin and the oud. It s also impressive that the Moroccans are masters in their own sphere. For example,  darbuka player Saïd Idrissi, regularly plays with "the voice of the Atlas", Najat Aâtabou.

Oud player, Léo Fabre-Cartier, is also a much respected musician who will be familiar to many Fez residents.

Léo Fabre-Cartier

ArbaA's repetitive groove jazz training was much inspired by traditional African music to create a director merge with Western music and African American. Moroccan music, by its repetitive and polyrhythmic building, has always been an inspiration to the quartet.

The Experimental Chaabi is the right meeting point between his powerful combo ArbaA and subtle Moroccan instruments, between the swaying trance chaâbi and hypnotic rhythms quartet. It is an open and accessible music and the concert is not to be missed!

The concert starts at 7pm at Dar Batha - sponsored by the French Institute.
They will also perfom in Casablanca on Sunday at B-Rock

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