North Africa’s Terakaft set to perform Sunday at Legion Arts

Legion Arts/CSPS Hall in Cedar Rapids // Sunday, March 10 // 7:00 p.m. // $17 in advance, $21 at door

Terakaft is the sort of music group that leaves international music fans beaming and documentarians drooling. In a previous write-up, Little Village columnist Steve Crowley explains:

Terakaft is an active voice for a movement that began in Libya in the early ‘80s. During a time of social and political turbulence, young Libyans whose families had been displaced from their homes in Niger took arms to regain their territory and culture.

Some of them also got ahold of guitars and recordings of western rock music.

Perhaps the most prominent and influential product of this musical revolution in Africa was the formation of Tinariwen. Often classified as “desert blues,” Tinariwen played rock music during a time when it was illegal, and therefore dangerous to do so. Tinariwen still exists as a collective of rotating musicians, but two of the founding members went on to create a new project, Terakaft. Carrying on their desert rock legacy, Terakaft tours the world spreading their messages of life in the Sahara.

Terakaft were expected to play in Cedar Rapids during the 2012 Landfall Festival of World Music, but unfortunate visa complications prevented the group from attending. Six months later, Terakaft are in the United States for the first time, set to play their second ever U.S. show (after New York on March 9) at Legion Arts this Sunday, March 10.

Take note of these exceedingly talented musicians when making your Sunday night plans.

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