Next Screening

Thursday, 13, November, 20.00
Albion Beatnik Bookshop
34 Walton St, Oxford, OX2 6AA

Agadez, the Music and the Rebellion

Dir. Ron Wyman | 2014 | USA, Niger | 66 min | French with English sub-titles

Omara Moctar, known as “Bombino”, is a young Tuareg musician from Niger. Bombino has become a cult hero in Niger and represents a new generation of Tuareg. He is becoming known as one of the great guitar players of West Africa, influenced by the legendary Ali Farka Toure, Tinariwen and Jimi Hendrix. This new cut includes Bombino’s journey to Festival au Desert in Timbuktu and his recording sessions for his new album, Nomad, with The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach in Nashville.

First released in 2011, and now updated, the film follows the rise of Omara Moctar known as “Bombino”, a young Tuareg musician from Niger. Bombino has become a cult hero in Niger and represents a new generation of Tuareg. He is becoming known as one of the great guitar players of West Africa, influenced by the legendary Ali Farka Toure, Tinariwen and Jimi Hendrix.

The film also tells the story of the Tuareg, a Saharan nomadic tribe who, since the 12th century, have linked North Africa and West Africa, guiding their camel caravans across the desert, spreading art and music from Egypt to Mali. The Tuareg guard their independence and personal freedoms fiercely and have taken up arms against the government three times in the past two decades. During the most recent Tuareg rebellion many Tuareg lost their lives and the Nigerien military executed two of Bombino’s musicians, driving him into exile for several years.

Many of the scenes in the film were shot just before the latest rebellion in some of the most beautiful and remote regions of the Sahara which are now inaccessible due to bandit kidnappings and al Qaeda activity.

“The film is “magnificent…takes our breath away and lets us know we’re entering into an environment far removed from anything most of us have experienced” – Richard Marcus, Blogscritics.org

“I can’t imagine any album being better than this in 2011” – Derek Beres, Huffington Post

 “…one of the best African discs of the year and without a doubt, the most magical!”  –  Les Inrockuptibles, Paris

“His desert rock and roll guitar had the audience cheering. It is the new sound of Niger and with his new album and a film he’ll soon be widely known. A member of the rebellion in Niger, Bombino brings a message of peace to the world and is an example of the spirit of changing guns for guitars.”  – Afropop.org reporting from Festival In the Desert, 2011

– Best of the Show, The Indie Fest, 2010
– Best NH Documentary, New Hampshire Film Festival, 2010
– Official Selection, Pan African Film Festival, Cannes, 2011
– Official Selection, South African Film Festival, 2010

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