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The Birth of the El Foukr R’Assembly

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It’s a stubborn fact that many people in North Africa don’t actually consider themselves part of Africa. Whether they identify as Middle Eastern, Arab, or some other way, there’s been a historical resistance to embracing continental solidarity.  That’s one reason it’s such a pleasure to discover this project involving a group of free-thinking Algerian musicians who want to travel to Ghana (and other West African destinations) to collaborate with musicians there and make a film about it.

They’ve already made this 18-minute film to describe and promote their idea. It’s worth watching, if only for its glimpses of musical life in Algeria today—something we see and hear far too little. Beyond that, it’s a genuine expression of unity and curiosity and imagination. We’ll be watching to see how this turns out.

El Foukr R’Assembly – MaghrAfreek: Look South from Oualid Khelifi on Vimeo.

If you’re so inclined, they’ve also got a mini-album, and a crowd-funding site for the project.

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