Sunday, August 30, 2015

Mahmoud Guinia - Soirée au Canada

Hello friends - I meant to have this up a few weeks ago, but have become caught in some writer's cramp. Rather than wait for the cramp to uncramp, I'll just share this now, without my usual ramblings. It's a live recording from a concert by the late, great Gnawi mâllem Mahmoud Guinia. Palm Wine posted a (now deleted) version of this tape a few years ago and said it was obtained in Morocco in 1978. That would seem to make it quite early in the discography (tape-ography?)

This is a different sort of live album than his Fikriphone debut, which was recorded live at a lila ceremony. Audience-performer interaction and expectations are quite different at this sit-down concert in Canada. (The announcements at the end of track 1 seem to indicate that it's some sort of folk festival or concert series.) Despite the lack of trancers (as far as I can tell), Mâllem Mahmoud delivers the goods, providing some excellent riffing during these long tunes for the assembled audience.

Yala features a shorter version of this album here. Yala's version removes a couple of warts in the performance, namely the falling down of the guinbri's bridge at the end of track 2 (the track is missing altogether) and again at the end of track 3 (the track fades out).

I've edited down track 7, which originally included a couple minutes of the same music copied and spliced to extend its length. If you want the original "extended remix", Yala's got it here.

El Maalem Mahmoud Gania - Soiree Au Canada (La Voix El Maarif 393)
01) Sheshiyat Bambara (v1)
02) Sheshiyat Bambara (v2)
03) Fulani ya Baba ya Sidi
04) Fofo Denba
05) Kommwi Baba Kommwi - Allah ya Mimoun Marhaba
06) Jilali Boualem
07) Shabakurya

Get it all here.


  1. Take care of your hands, Tim ... and, thanks!

  2. Aaaagh - I mean writer's BLOCK, though it felt like a mental CRAMP. The hands are OK, الحَمْد لله. Thx Gary!

  3. Great ! Thank you Abdellah, رحم الله المعلم

  4. Hi Tim, Wanted to thank you for all your wonderful Moroccan tapes.

    I recorded this music at CBC - the Canadian national broadcaster, in summer of 1992. They broadcast it that year after I organized performances for Mahmoud and his ensemble at the 350th anniversary of the City of Montreal. Mahmoud returned with the DAT tape and Moroccan rights and sold it 'as is' to Voix El Maarif. Simultaneously I re-sequenced it, and it was released in Japan by P-Vine as The Black Mluks (although it certainly was not a recording of black mluks). Hopefully I will find a way to have a broader release of this album soon.

    My band FAT spent over a year in Morocco betwen 1988 and 1990 and I was blessed at being able to return a similar experience to Mahmoud, his brother Mohktar, Abdellah Ahkerraz and his late father, the over 80 year old ritual slaughterer of animals for the Gnaoua at the time, and other family members, and bring them to Canada to perform. They spent two weeks on their first trip abroad in Montreal.

    I also found a way to bring Raissa Fatima Tihihit with a 12 piece Tachelhit Orchestra made up of Agadir session players, led by Rais Lahcen Benlamouden that same summer and she returned with a similar tape which was released locally.

    25 years later you can hear the results of our time in Morocco here:

    RIP one of the most powerful musicians I have had the privilege of experiencing perform. Mahmoud changed my life.

    Eric Rosenzveig

  5. Hello Eric - Wow, thanks for the backstory on this album! Please let me know If you'd like me to take down the mp3s, especially if a proper reissue is in the works!

    How great that you were able to have such an exchange with the Moroccan artists you mentioned. The Haha recordings I heard on your Bandcamp page are frenzied! Some fantastic textures going on there!

    Wishing you all the best

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