This unique concert brings together some of the leading contemporary Somali singers living in the UK to present the music of Somalia's most popular singer, Magool. It will be the first time that women from the UK's estimated 450k Somali community will be touring Britain.
The show features most popular Somali singer Farxiya Fiska the first Somali artist to have youtube hits exceeding 1 million. Considered by many to have the greatest voice of her generation, she has been compared to the greats such as Aamina and Magool, a fact underlined by her acclaimed reworkings of Magool's songs. But in a unique departure Farxiya Fiska will go back to the roots of modern Somali music; Qaraami. Qaraami is the Arabic flavoured music that mixes with Sudanese/ Ethiopian melodies that dominated Somali music. Performed by solo voice and oud (a middle eastern lute) and often featuring epic poems this style became popular in the 50's and 60's with popularity spreading beyond Somali to Sudan and Ethiopia.
Joining her on the bill is Birmingham based Nimco Degan, considered the most authentic voice of Somali music and respected by the old and young alike. She gained some prominence by creating the first ever fusion of Somali and Indian music in a collaboration with tabla maestro and producer Kuljit Bamra
In the second half of the performance Farxiya Fiska and Nimco Degan will perform their own contemporary hits.
2014 marks the 10th anniversary of the death of Somalia's most popular singer. Magool was a singer whose life is entwined in the recent of history of her homeland. From her beginnings in Somalia's most popular band, the state funded Waaberi to solo work and self-imposed exile followed by migration to the west her life and struggles have mirrored those of her compatriots. On her return from exile she played a sell-out show in the national stadium, still the largest concert in Somalia. She played Qaraami, a traditional oud style as well as pop and her popularity spread well beyond Somalia. Leading poets such as Hadrawi wrote epic poem / songs for her and to this day leading singers perform them.
In an age where our view of Somali culture is dominated by pirates and terrorism Homage to Magool reminds us of the greatness of Somali music and an age where music filled all corners of this country. Surviving two decades of conflict and religious conservatism this debut tour for Somalia most popular singer will be your chance to share the beauty of this country's musical wealth.