A few hours before the show, in front of the Poisson Rouge, the new West Village venue where Tinariwen would perform on that night, a new yorker dressed as a tuareg asked a tuareg dressed as a new yorker an autograph. This world is sometimes a funny chaos.
Tinariwen is one of my favourite bands, by far the most incredible sound to come from Africa in this 21st century - hard to imagine how they have been able to come up with such a unique sound, and many of the most interesting brooklyn bands of the day were in the room to try to understand. In the end everybody was dancing and it was just perfect.
The first time i have seen Tinariwen play was at 3am, in the middle of the desert in Mali, at the Festival au Desert, 2 hours away from Timbuktu, and it was an incredible experience. Even when they were not playing live, their music was played in each city we visited, always this same melody catching our ears. My friend Wills from Greenowl offered me the possibility of filming them before the show, and this little video we share today (plus this other one) is the very simple result of a long deal to convince them to play an acoustic song - in the end, only the main singer Ibrahim joined us. Nothing incredible here, total impro style in backstage a few minutes before the show, but a beautiful sound i wanted you to hear. Plus this other short video during their live performance (and, no, they don’t dress like that in the streets of NY).
Last note, they are featured in the movie Footsteps in Africa, a nomadic journey. I haven’t seen the film yet, let’s just hope it will be better than the shitty trailer they have.