Abayazid Ali Dahabli, the Afari 'nomad bluesman'


Lake Abbé, Djibouti

Do you share my love for simple pentatonic melodies and repetitive guitar riffing?  This post is for you. 

Mohamed Ali Mohamed was born in Djibouti in 1975.  Over the last thirty years, as the artist Abayazid Ali Dahabli, he has developed a style he calls 'Nomade Blues', simple Afar melodies accompanied on the guitar.  Since his first performance, at age 15, during a national song and dance competition organized by the Ministry of Culture, Abayazid has performed in France, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Canada, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Algeria, Tunisia, Senegal, Burkina, and Cote D'Ivoire.  (I was lucky to catch his performance during the 2006 edition of the FestHorn, Djibouti's premier [only?] music festival.)

While Abayazid has performed with a variety of ensembles in a variety of contexts, he most often performs for small gatherings in Djiboutian parlors, with his guitar and a drum machine.  This cassette features a set of songs most probably recorded in the 1990s: primitive beatbox, guitar, and a yearning voice.  I don't need much else.  


(I couldn't resist the tourist brochure picture, nabbed off our internet.) 


  1. your description of this sounds incredible i am burning it now
    to give it a late night spin. thank you so much

  2. the music is as good as your description!!!!! thank u. i found more about 3 collections on youtube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhkHFzecj7w


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