May 14, 2016 23:00
Bombino, rising star of desert blues, was born and grew in Niger. He is a member of the Ifoghas tribe, which belongs to the Kel Air Tuareg federation.
During a trip to Niamey, Bombino met with his uncle Rissa Ixa, a famous Tuareg painter, who gave him a guitar. Upon returning to Agadez, Bombino joined the Tuareg political party where he met the well-known guitarist Haia Bebe. He started getting lessons, improving to the point where Haja Bebe invited him to join his band. It was during this time that Bombino acquired his nickname. As the youngest and smallest member of the band, the other members called him Bombino, a variation on the Italian word for “little child”. He began to develop a keen interest in Jimi Hendrix and Mark Knopfler and studied their technique when moving between Algeria and Libya.
After returning to Niger he began his career as a full-time musician and his talent did not go unnoticed. In 2009, a chance meeting with Ron Wyman changed his destiny, but only a year after the American filmmaker tracked down Bombino, meanwhile forced to flee to Burkina Faso due to the murder of two members of his band, killed in a revolt. Wyman devoted to Bombino most of his documentary about the Tuareg tribes and became the producer of Agadez, the solo debut disc (the first album was in 2009, Group Bombino – Guitars from Agadez, Vol. 2).
Meanwhile the fame of the young talent grows up: he is known all over the world and plays in the most important music festivals, with prominent collaborations, including that with Keith Richards. Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys) meets Bombino and decides to produce Nomad, the third album released worldwide in April 2013 on the label Nonesuch / Warner. Recorded in the studio of Auerbach in Nashville, Nomad is the meeting of desert rock with blues, played by the skilled hands of Bombino and enriched by his intense and vigorous voice.
Bombino’s music frequently addresses Tuareg geopolitical concerns and is sung in the Tuareg language of Tamasheq.
His electrifying jams capture the spirit of resistance and rebellion while echoing with guitar riffs reminiscent of fellow Africans Tinariwen and Ali Farka Touré as well as Jimi Hendrix, John Lee Hooker and Jimmy Page.
in collaboration with Associazione Music Pool