Asmaa Hamzaoui & Bnat Timbouktou

Asmaa Hamzaoui & Bnat Timbouktou photo Lars Opstad

Asmaa Hamzaoui is the foremost female ambassador of Gnawa music. With her group Bnat
Timbouktou, she delivers a contagious brand of evangelistic desert blues. Asmaa’s expressive voice works as the centerpiece of the music, while the soundscape is
filled with the rhythmic percussion of qraqeb, very characteristic of Gnawa music. Even though women are essential to Gnawa rituals, there have not been many female Gnawa musicians. Asmâa Hamzaoui and the group Bnat Timboktou are part of a new wave who
changes this trend. Asmâa was taught guembri as a child and played in her father’s band. All this led to the start of the group. “To us, Gnawa stands above all other kinds of music. It’s our childhood. It’s spiritual, healing, and it makes you feel grounded”. The rhythmic nature of Gnawa music, together with its deeply ritualistic nature, creates an unforgettable experience to both dance to and heal with.

Photo Lars Opstad


Posted on

17 June 2024