Check out this fantastic video of the evening,courtesy of our in-house photographer Mr. See Li
To commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the Moroccan invasion of Western Sahara in October-November 1975 and the foundation of the Saharawi republic in exile in February 2016, Sandblast organised a series of events in London over a period of 4 months (Oct 15, 2015 - Feb 6, 2016).
@ Hundred Years Gallery, Hoxton.
- Oct 15 - Nov 1, 2015: 40-year retrospective photographic exhibition that highlighted the role of UK-based photographers in documenting the struggle in Western Sahara. This included daily activities such as artistic performances, film screenings, talks, and much more from different people based in the UK who have been involved with the Saharawis in various ways thorughout the years. See full program of activities here.
We are excited to announce a series of events we're organising this autumn to commemorate the 40 years of the Saharawi struggle for self-determination in collaboration with various collectives and two vibrant London venues, Bolivar Hall (Venezuelan embassy) and Hundred Years Gallery.
Through photography, film, music and much more, Africa's Last Colony - 40 Years Not Forgotten aims to remember the most important events that have shaped the history of the conflict inWestern Sahara, as well as to showcase the valuable role of UK-based artists in raising awareness about this underreported issue.
At Sandblast we've been busy throughout the first half of the year developing the different strands of our music empowerment project Studio-Live. Here's a summary of activities:
January 2013 – The Sandblast Team travelled to Vitoria-Gasteiz (Spain) to help coordinate a Historical Encounter of Saharawi Musicians living in Spain at the Music Conservatory of Music ‘Jesús Guridi’. The meeting, organised in collaboration with legendary revolutionary singer Oum Reghia, gathered more than 40 musicians and cultural figures, including singer Oum Dleila, musician Bachir Sidi, composer and guitarist Ali Mohamed, poet Ali Salem Iselmu, and young musicians Yslem and Lehsen, among many others. Studio-Live was presented for the first time in Spain. Throughout the day, interesting conversations sparkled around Saharawi music, its role in the struggle and its current state. The day-long event concluded with a concert in the evening, given by a number of the attending musicians, who delighted the audience with legendary songs such as ‘Sahara is not for sale’, by Oum Reghia, and ‘A song to the martyrs’, by Oum Dleila, who had not sung in more than 8 years.
One more of our great artists from Sahara Nights.
Not yet 30, Mosi already has a long professional career to his name having started playing the many instruments he is master of at 4 and touring from 15. Much in demand to play with every leading African band, Mosi now introduces his own matchless crew drawing in superb fellow musicians. As a soloist Mosi Conde has played at WOMAD, for Nelson Mandela and at numerous festivals and gatherings and brings all this experience to leading Kaira Kora Africa. (Info from MySpace).
Sahara Nights is around the corner! Today we introduce…
We’re featuring today our great Scottish violinist performing at Sahara Nights
Collaborating with Saharawi musicians in the camps remains a seminal experience for her as a musician. She also currently works as a Peaceworker for Quaker Peace and Social Witness.
This is a video of Blue Rose Code with Lizzy as violinist.
Today we are featuring another great artist from Sahara Nights
The album has been completely self-produced under the advice of Jorge García and Nico Roca, the percussionist who will be accompanying Suilma at Sahara Nights. Even though not in a very obvious musical way, Suilma is committed to her Saharawi roots and has performed at numerous events in support of her people’s culture and right to self-determination.
We continue with our mini features on the artists participating @ Sahara Nights.
As a singer – with vocal training in jazz, pop and South African singing – Binisa has a distinctive approach to songwriting with compositions originating from melodic use of the bass. Ben and Greg, both also Londoners, have backgrounds in many different styles of music from funk and ska through to hip-hop, jazz and beyond. They have one album on the market,Red Storm, and are working on their next one. (Info from MySpace).
We’re doing mini features of our wonderful artistic line-up @ Sahara Nights. And we’re starting with our headliner, fantastic Saharawi singer and percussionist Aziza Brahim.
Many of her songs are influenced by the breath-taking poetry of her grandmother, Lkhadra Mabruk. Aziza’s new album, Mabruk, which will be released in June, is an homage to her and her great labour as commentator of the 16 years of Saharawi. This is a video of single “La tierra derrama lágrimas.”
News about Sandblast & Western Sahara