Sunday, April 15, 2012

El Bhiri - Chaâbi from Casa, yeah!

Instead of poring through the Lomax collection yesterday, I decided to pore through a stash of about 75 cassettes I inherited from a friend recently. Separated out the Maghrebi music tapes from the Middle Eastern ones and the Islamic lectures. I was still jonesing for some chaâbi, and scored with a swell tape of El Bhiri. describes him as a chaâbi artist from Casablanca. The tracks here stay mostly to the aita side of the chaâbi field, with the exception of track 5, which is more of a call-response percussion band-style rave-up.

The tape is missing the first couple minutes of track 3, where someone inadvertently (or advertently?) taped some interesting but completely non-sequitur Middle Atlas tamazight song on top.

Here's El Bhiri on TV:

Get it here.


  1. That's cool, Tim.

    It's Aita (العيطة also spelled in Arablish-Arabizi as 3ita) music; some kind of chaabi music from the mountainous (Jbala) regions of Morocco. The plural is 'aiot' or عيوط. I think there were so many Moroccan aiot artisans like Al-Bahiri Abd-Al-A'al (his full name by the way. Arabic: البحيري عبدالعال).
    Al-Hajj El-Gheathi was the most famous of these singers, in addition to Al-Mukhtar El-Laroussi. Other newer ones are Al-Hassan El-Meskini (his songs are styles after the Aita Kharibka -عيطة خريبكة rhythm), Sheik Bouazzaoui (whose sons are still singing as Ouled El-Bouazzaoui), Shiek Ahmad El-Karfathi (here's an .rm audiofile to listen to ), and Khadija Maroum with Ould Souba (DailyMotion vid: ).

    I shall lastly, give you a huge audiobook-like link that has some streamable MP3s (For the uninitiated: a simple FlashRip would render these audio-files into downloadable MP3s directly to your compooper), for the best Aita musicians in Morocco:

    Enjoy it to the max, Tim. I guess you have just got yourself another 'Stash' there... Dig it!

    Fe 5'atir Marrakesh!


    Note: there's another Egyptian chaabi singer from Al-Bahira region in the north of Egypt whose name is also Al-Bahiri Abdel-A'al. No relation whatsoever to the Moro-Bahiri.

  2. this is absolutely stunning. thanks for sharing man! you always post stellar albums.

  3. @Hammer - whoa! I'd found some of that stash at
    But there seems to be even more from this source. Shukran!

    @burntoutsavannahs - thanks! Glad you dug this one!

  4. this stuff is wild, i love it, thanks for posting

  5. Wonderful stuff, really digging it.