2015 Schedule
Interactive: March 13–17  •  Film: March 13–21  •  Music: March 17–22

Presented by: Levitation

Songhoy Blues

Thursday, March 19
10:00PM - 10:45PM

Hotel Vegas Patio
1500 E 6th St


Garba Touré and his guitar were a familiar sight on the banks on the Niger, upstream from Timbuktu in Mali, West Africa. But when armed Islamist jihadists too control of Northern Mali in the spring of 2012, he knew it was time to leave.

“They ordered people to stop smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol and playing music and although I don’t smoke or drink, I love the guitar, so I thought: ‘This isn’t the mo­ment to hang around. I have to go south... now.’”

The hard­line Islamist gunmen drove music underground. The penalties for playing or even just listening to it on your mobile phone were a public whipping, a stint in an overcrowded jail or worse. Like thousands of refugees, Garba grabbed a bag, his guitar and boarded a bus to the capital Bamako.

Arriving with some other musician friends from the north, they decided to form a band. “We wanted to recreate that lost ambience of the north and make all the refugees re...

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Music Badge, Platinum Badge, Music Festival Wristband, Artist Wristband
Bamako, MALI

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