In a never-ending quest to dig out the subterranean sounds from all corners of the earth, WFMU has hooked in with the first-ever Alchemy At Zahar festival for what's sure to be a most amazing event in the Moroccan desert province of Zagora on April 18-21st. The event, which is being put together as a philanthropic, government-sponsored endeavor to help create forward motion in a wells project in order to bring a dwindling population back into the province, will have support from the Alchemy Association, the Association of Development for People with Specific Needs (ADPSN) of Tagounite and the Association for Alphabetization of Tagounite. WFMU and our fellow freeform broadcast pals at KFJC in the Bay Area of California will conduct a joint broadcast (and hopeful video simulcast) from quite a bit of this event, which will feature an amazing cross-section of Western and African adventurous sounds:
Ahwach N Tferkine (traditional group from the Souss-Massa Drâa Region, featuring a choir of twelve female singers and four male percussionists), Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble (experimental/film noir European combo), Lee Ranaldo (w/Leah Singer, and his band), Pelican (post-rock Chicago metal ensemble), Brothers Unconnected (Alan and Rick Bishop of Sun City Girls, also performing solo sets), Master Musicians of Bukkake (playing the Totem Trilogy), AND the legendary Master Musicians of Jajouka, ethno-prog West Coast stalwarts Secret Chiefs 3, Portuguese psych band Black Bombino, Tinariwin d'Mhamid (young Tinariwen covers band!), Abraxas, and more (full lineup/updates here). A dream lineup for both stations.
The idea of riding six and a half hours from Marrakech to the desert town of M'hamid Al Ghislane, then taking 4x4s on sand tracks an hour away to a tent/stage setup almost at the Algerian border (the Screaming Dune of Zahar) isn't your usual WFMU remote, but with the support of the Festival to bring us out, we're up for the challenge! If all goes well we will be documenting the beautiful sights and sounds along the way, hopeful camel excursions to the well sites to boot. We're extremely excited to work with organizer Basile and Alchemy, and our friends from KFJC at this event. More info to follow, and please keep an eye on Alchemy's site and Facebook. Tickets and packages for the (intrepid) public and concertgoers is also on the site. Should be amazing!