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Aziza Brahim

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Aziza is a Saharawi from Western Sahara, born in a refugee camp in Algeria. At the age of 11 Aziza received a schoolarship to study in Cube where she spent seven years, before abandoning her studies in order to dedicate herself to music. She won the first prize in a national song competition in a cultural festival of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic - the self-proclaimed Saharawi state, exiled in the refugee camps and recognized by over 80 countries. Aziza did her first recordings for the Saharawi National Radio in the refugee camps and from there came her first tour outside the camps in Mauritania and Algeria as part of the National Saharawi Music Group. In 1998 the spanish record company Nubenegra publish the trilogy “Saharauis”, including two songs from her. After that she made several tours with the National Saharawi Music Group “Leyuad” in Europe from 1998 to 2004. In 2005 she made her first experience mixing the traditional music from Western Sahara with another musics, with the Latin Jazz music group Yayabo. Now she’s working with her new group, Gulili Mankoo (a mix of Western Sahara music, rythms from Senegal and Blues music) in her new forthcoming record.
Aziza’s family come from El Aaiun, the capital of the former Spanish colony of Western Sahara. Aziza’s mother fled the Moroccan invasion in 1975 and survived the 1976 Moroccan bombardments of napalm against the Saharawi civilians who had sought refugee deep in the eastern desert of Western Sahara.

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