Published Nov 29, 2010India-born/Canada-raised singer Kiran Ahluwalia is no stranger to crossing cultural borders with her music, as she won the Juno for World Music Album of the Year back in 2004. While her past records have drawn heavily on the music of India, her latest project takes inspiration from the blues of the Sahara desert.
Aam Zameen: Common Ground is due out January 18 via Outside. For the album, Ahluwalia teamed up with two groups from the Sahara region, Terakaft and the much-praised Tinariwen. She recorded with British world music producer Justin Adams (Robert Plant), and sessions took place in France and the UK. A press release calls the disc "a sea change from her previous work and perhaps the most persuasive fusing of South Asian and West African music ever realized."
"I knew it would be compelling to have a song from the South Asian Islamic tradition performed with Muslims from Mali" said Ahluwalia in a statement, "and I could think of nothing better than the Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan classic, Mustt Mustt. The use of hand claps and the call and response between the main vocalist and the rest of the group's singers are common to both qawwali music and the Tuareg's own music".
To experience the fusion in person, check out the tour dates below. There are a total of nine tour dates, running from Montreal all the way to Vancouver Island.
1/19 Montreal, QC - L'Astral
1/21 London, ON - Aoelian Hall
1/22 Toronto, ON - Koerner Hall *
1/25 Thompson, MB - Letkmann Theatre
1/27 Sherwood Park, AB - Festival Place *
1/28 Regina, SK - The Artesian
1/29 Calgary, AB - Jack Singer Concert Hall *
1/30 Vancouver, BC - Vancouver Playhouse *
2/2 Victoria, BC - University Centre Farquhar Auditorium
* with Rhythms of Rajasthan