The country of Mauritania sits on the far West of the African continent, between desert and sea. A rapidly urbanizing population has settled in the capital of Nouakchott over the past decades, and traditional music has mixed with modern instrumentation in a myriad of forms. But Mauritanian music remains distinctively regional and proudly independent of global homogeny. Explore the Sahel Sounds archives of field recordings, videos, and albums on contemporary and archival Mauritania music here!

turquoise hexagon rim

A little gift, a Mauritanian remix, inspired from the archives of an old media studio in Mauritania, and a bored afternoon: public service announcement / boards of canada mashup

Continue Reading turquoise hexagon rim

da art of storytellin

The hodou, the traditional Pulaar guitar, is often used to tell a story. And perhaps one of the best known modern storytellers in Mauritania was musician Saïdou Ba: Saïdou Ba - Sayglare "Born in 1939 in Daou (in the commune of Maghama) to a circle of artists attached to the…

Continue Reading da art of storytellin

Combination Mining Hub and Salsa Ball

In a rather desolate mountain range of the Northern Mauritanian desert is the town of Zouérate. Iron ore was discovered in the 1950s, and led to a categorical influx of inhabitants to make the mining operations. Mauritanians from the capital, foreign experts from other African countries, and a sizable French…

Continue Reading Combination Mining Hub and Salsa Ball

find your quiet place

There is something immediately compelling about drumming in the night. Perhaps it's the stark contrast, the deep thumps resounding through the otherwise hushed darkness. The sound is fueled by the fires of exoticism, the drums hidden by both the darkness and the night, suggesting something ritualistic, sacred, and above all,…

Continue Reading find your quiet place

Sahelsounds, the promo cd

A little compilation of recordings from the site, for downloadable and listening pleasure. Bismillah. 01 - teyti announces issawat 02 - abba - ishumar guitar 03 - girl and mother - na hawa doumbia 04 - alkibar gignor - ali farka homage 05 - tidiane - fanta 06 - sahl…

Continue Reading Sahelsounds, the promo cd