Musical Rhythms in Algeria

The musical world in Algeria has many different faces. Even though their traditional music is still played and loved, the younger generation of musicians that are making an impact on the music industry in Algeria, often combine influences from other countries and music styles, to create a unique sound, and to appeal to a broader audience.

Folk music that was past on through the generations, is Raï. The Original form of Raï music was influenced by various cultures, such as Arabic sounds and mixtures from French, Spanish and other African music. Today, the music has evolved into a more modern sound, with European music, Asian, and African music playing a vital role in its new sound. Artists such as Cheb Aïssa, Akil, Bilal, Chaba Fadela and Cheb Hasni keep the Raï music alive, and have found new listeners in other countries.

Another form of traditional folk music that is kept alive by musicians is that of Kabylia. Kabylia is not just enjoyed by the local population, but has come to have a strong following on international shores. Success this big is due to the dedication of artists such as Boudjemaa Agraw and Lounis Aït Menquellet.

Jazz is a very popular style of music in Algeria, and is often incorporated into other styles of music, although many talented musicians practice its original form. Whenever jazz is mentioned, everyone has the visions of New Orleans, the birthplace of jazz, and the smooth and soulful sounds of artists such as Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Clarence Williams and Benny Goodman. Jazz was born in America but has spread out across the world and in countries such as Algeria, has become just as much a part of them, as it was to the legendary musicians. Algeria often hosts jazz
festivals where thousands come together to enjoy this spirited music.
Popular artists include Deepak Ram, Omar Sosa and Fethi Tabet.

Algeria is a tapestry of different music styles that are either listened to in their original form, or are combined to create a rhythmic feast of music creativity. Rising musicians and singers in Algeria are reaching out to the world, and the world is slowly embracing the unique and beautiful sounds that are rising up from the Algerian landscape.