Friday, May 3, 2013

Cheb Hasni | Tehroub Omri

I've never understood why Algerian Rai never took off as one of the hot, new "world musics du jour" here in the U.S. the way that, say, Afro-Cuban, Reggae or even Bulgarian music once did. (I'd probably never have had this conversation, if it had.) Not that I particularly care one way or the other, but it's my suspicion that, if it had taken off, we'd have seen more books in English than just Marc Schade-Poulsen's Men and Popular Music in Algeria: The Social Significance of Raï.

Born Hasni Chakroun in Oran in 1968, the year after the last French forces left the Mers El Kébir naval base, Cheb Hasni recorded more than 100 cassettes worth of songs before Islamic extremists assassinated him outside his parents' home in Oran in 1994.

That same year: 

  • American-Israeli mass-murderer Baruch Goldstein senselessly takes the lives of 29 Palestinians; he is beaten to death by surviving victims and his grave subsequently becomes a pilgrimage site for Israeli extremists
  • Hutus hack more than 800,000 Tutsis to death while the rest of us watch Friends, snicker at Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan jokes and mourn the self-inflicted death of heroin addict, Kurt Kobain.

Get the album here.


DubMe said...

Thanks for sharing this Cheb Hasni album... I have listened to some of his music a while ago - and have always kinda been interested in Rai music... There is just to little available - at least if you don't have any Arabic shops around. Downloading now... Nice blog you have - have been checking your blog for a while... Liked your "Guilty until proven innocent?" post.

Best wishes from China; DubMe

Ampontan said...

One reason rai might not have taken off like the others is drum machines, in a form in which the non-Western rhythm is critical (as with reggae and Cuban music).

Unknown said...

Please refresh the link for download, thanks