Maâlem Abdeslam Alikane
Maâlem Abdeslam Alikane is artistic director of the Gnaoua and World Music Festival in Essaouira, as well as one of its founders. As president of the Yerma Gnaoua Association, Alikane has worked tirelessly for the recognition of Gnaoua and to raise awareness of their art in Morocco and around the world. He specialises in “marsaoui” style, and is well-known for his particular mastery of therapeutic practice. Today he is one of the great messengers of Gnaoua art throughout the world, in the company of his Tyour Gnaoua troupe. He has participated in many international festivals, and has played with both Peter Gabriel and Ray Lema, with whom he recorded the “Safi” album in 2000. With Tyour Gnaoua, he has performed alongside numerous world music and jazz artists, such as Jaleel Shaw in 2008 and the famous guitarist Sylvain Luc in 2015. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Festival in 2017, Maâlem Alikane presented a one-of-a-kind concert with his old friend and artist-in-residence Ray Lema. He recently performed at Brasil’s Rock in Rio festival 2020, as well as Troscan in Las Palmas. For this 24th edition, Alikane joins forces with the well-known guitarist/composer Torsten de Winkel—with Zouhair Amkas on drums— and the legendary Sulaiman Hakim on the trumpet for Morocco-German-Finnish and American sounds that promise a true moment of grace.