Monday, 2 April 2012

IZMAZ (1979)

Izmaz started playing in 1976 and featured a young Ali Chouhad, who later went on to form Archach. This is beautiful, raw banjo led mountain music from the Issaffen region of Southern Morocco, and you absolutely need it. By the time the guimbri kicks in at 5:25 I'm halfway to the stars:


Any more info about this tape, and the group more generally would be much appreciated. In the meantime, get it HERE.

Update 03/04/2012!

Thanks to Hammer from Audiotopia for the wealth of info about this cassette and IZMAZ. According to Hammer, this was the group's second album - their first will follow in a later post you lucky, lucky people!

J-Card Info:
Face-A:
Ma Trai'eit El-Mout ('Haven't Seen Death')- Ayhaya - Anshad ('Songs').
Face-B:
Lalla Oumali ('Lalla What's Wrong With Me?') - Tagrist - Manfanhoul - Azoul Flak ('The Vanishing Horizons').

Members:
Mohammed Khaledi Ba'Yazid
Abdallah Al-A'arfi
L'Hassan El-Werdi
Abdelateef Fehmi
Mohammed Dammou

Birth-place: Tafroun - Casablanca 'Eddar El-Bedha', Morocco.

Chronology: Formed in the late 60's. Started playing from 1973 till late summer, 1975. Lineup changed a lot in the early 80's. Disbanded in 1986.

Description: An Amazigh-Soussian band who followed suit of an earlier Moroccan Amazigh band (Osman), that played music influenced by western pop artists and reggae lords like Bob Marley.
The style became known as Tazinzart; a Ghwenai kinda fusion of rock and traditional 'Ruweis' sounds. Izmaz started as a theatrical group featuring friends Mohammed Khaledi (known as Ba'Yazid), and Abdallah Al-A'arfi (known as 'El-Maghreb') with a third member L'Hassan El-Werdi O'Salim playing their lotar/rabab/naqous traditional instruments.

They left Tefrawat the small village where they all hailed from and moved to Casablanca contacting Ali Shouhad: a well-known musician from Issafen Nit Haroun district near Tata town who lived in Zangat Louzitania, and used to frequent a cafe-lietraire in Casablanca called Le Joie. Ali Shouhad showed interest in joining them. Moulawi Ali joined them finally in 1976 after relocating to Casablanca.

Their early days of performing together were in 1973, singing at Moroccan popular celebrations like King Hassan II's Ascendance to the throne, and some private public parties. The band decided then to go full-circle with the public, naming their selves first in 1975 Inrin. Their first successful concert playing as Izmaz took place at The Public Theatre celebrating The Green March revolution. Later on in 1977 Mohammed Dammou joined as a gnawist along with ex-member Ibrahim Koko who performed with the band in one cassette album before quitting them.

In 1979, Ali Shouhad left the band to form Archach, and Fehmi Abdelateef took Ali's place as a percussionist. The band toured France and Belgium later that year, playing for the Moroccan immigres. In 1986, a piracy-related court case was held against some company who copied their cassette albums without the group's consent. The case dragged on for years, causing most members (Mohammed Dammou) to leave disbanding Izmaz, ultimately.

Discography:
1.) EL-Sakhi Disc 'Rouatagh Ik Inmon' - 1978.
2.) Sharitifon 'Izmaz' - 1979.

Accomplishments:
-Izmaz is credited to inventing a new 'meld' instrument which joined three already established ones (Rbab Soussi/Lotar/Tssouissit) into one instrument.
-Ali Shouhad is credited for forming a 100-strong Amazighian symphony which was such a feat musically speaking at that time.

ENJOY!

22 comments:

Hammer said...

This is rawkin'! Me likey a lot.

CC J-Card Info:
Face-A:
Ma Trai'eit El-Mout ('Haven't Seen Death')- Ayhaya - Anshad ('Songs').
Face-B:
Lalla Oumali ('Lalla What's Wrong With Me?') - Tagrist - Manfanhoul - Azoul Flak ('The Vanishing Horizons').

Howl babe!

H.H.

Hammer said...

Members:
Mohammed Khaledi Ba'Yazid
Abdallah Al-A'arfi
L'Hassan El-Werdi
Abdelateef Fehmi
Mohammed Dammou

Birth-place: Tafroun - Casablanca 'Eddar El-Bedha', Morocco.

Chronology: Formed in the late 60's. Started playing from 1973 till late summer, 1975. Lineup changed a lot in the early 80's. Disbanded in 1986.

Description: An Amazigh-Soussian band who followed suit of an earlier Moroccan Amazigh band (Osman), that played music influenced by western pop artists and reggae lords like Bob Marley.
The style became known as Tazinzart; a Ghwenai kinda fusion of rock and traditional 'Ruweis' sounds. Izmaz started as a theatrical group featuring friends Mohammed Khaledi (known as Ba'Yazid), and Abdallah Al-A'arfi (known as 'El-Maghreb') with a third member L'Hassan El-Werdi O'Salim playing their lotar/rabab/naqous traditional instruments.

They left Tefrawat the small village where they all hailed from and moved to Casablanca contacting Ali Shouhad: a well-known musician from Issafen Nit Haroun district near Tata town who lived in Zangat Louzitania, and used to frequent a cafe-lietraire in Casablanca called Le Joie. Ali Shouhad showed interest in joining them. Moulawi Ali joined them finally in 1976 after relocating to Casablanca.

Their early days of performing together were in 1973, singing at Moroccan popular celebrations like King Hassan II's Ascendance to the throne, and some private public parties. The band decided then to go full-circle with the public, naming their selves first in 1975 Inrin. Their first successful concert playing as Izmaz took place at The Public Theatre celebrating The Green March revolution. Later on in 1977 Mohammed Dammou joined as a gnawist along with ex-member Ibrahim Koko who performed with the band in one cassette album before quitting them.

In 1979, Ali Shouhad left the band to form Archach, and Fehmi Abdelateef took Ali's place as a percussionist. The band toured France and Belgium later that year, playing for the Moroccan immigres. In 1986, a piracy-related court case was held against some company who copied their cassette albums without the group's consent. The case dragged on for years, causing most members (Mohammed Dammou) to leave disbanding Izmaz, ultimately.

Discography:
1.) EL-Sakhi Disc 'Rouatagh Ik Inmon' - 1978.
2.) Sharitifon 'Izmaz' - 1979.

Accomplishments:
-Izmaz is credited to inventing a new 'meld' instrument which joined three already established ones (Rbab Soussi/Lotar/Tssouissit) into one instrument.
-Ali Shouhad is credited for forming a 100-strong Amazighian symphony which was such a feat musically speaking at that time.

Similar Artists/Bands:
- Amarak Fizioun
- Osman
- Izanzeran
- Archach

Hammer said...

http://i1147.photobucket.com/albums/o560/HythamHammer/Izmaz.jpg Here's a group picture of Izmaz that I myself had joined with the full lineup that played around the late 70's.

Hope you can enjoy it.

Dig dawgs.

H.H.

Mr Tear said...

Hi Hammer,

Many, many thanks for all the info and photos! Wow, what great work.

I hope you checked out the Archach stuff I posted too!

X Mr Tear

Hammer said...

Sure did, bra.

No need to thank me.

Stay cool!

H.H.

Hammer said...

By the way, that uber-symphony that Ali Shouhad (or, Chohad), had gathered around was amassed from around twenty Amazighian bands. Names? Aite...
-Izanzeran (or, Izanzeren).
-Toudirt.
-Archach.
-Titar.
-Izmaz.
-Ikiedar.
-El-Razaf.
-Inakan.
-El-Majadeel.
-La'Ariach.
-Ait Matin.
-Ishlihin.
-Akabaren.
-Aparazen.
-Essoutar.
-Timitar.
-Imdiazen.

This gigantic gig was held at the Toudert Music convention (The Sidi Hamou Al-Talib) in the city of Taznit in 10th August, 2009. Now, that's a wow.

Dig.

H.H.

tim abdellah said...

Mr. T - this is beautiful stuff!! I'd never heard this group. Unlike some of the Ghiwani groups, this has a sweet, laid-back feel, yet compromises nothing on intensity! REALLY looking forward to hearing the other album you mentioned! Many thanks! (& thanx HH for the background info - fantastic!)

Mr Tear said...

Hi Tim, yes I'm absolutely loving this one too. It was a chance find in an amazing tape and cd shop in the back room of an electrical goods shop not far from the big square. I ambled by and just happened to look in the doorway and past the fridge freezers and wide screen tvs there was what looked like a wall full of tapes! What a lucky glance.

Greetings from Oslo said...

Halfway to the stars and back! Thank you for a lot of awesome music and interesting information on the artists. These warm tunes are so hard to come by up here in the cold north.

David said...

Wonderful - thank you!!

Anonymous said...

Alas this link no longer seems to work. If a re-up is possible, it will surely be appreciated.

Thanks for all the great sharing!!

Mr Tear said...

The link should work now. I've uploaded it to ADrive so please let me know how that goes.
X

Anonymous said...

The new link works great. I'm listening to it now... and loving it. Thanks so much!!

Anonymous said...

merci pour ce partage ... un groupe que j'apprécie beaucoup car je suis de cette région du Maroc ...

thank you for sharing ... a group that I appreciate because I am in this part of Morocco ...

Mr. Daad said...

Whatever happend to the promised post of Izmaz 1st album? I would realy like to hear it and i guess i'm not the only one.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mr Dad, I posted the first LP a few months back. You can find it here:
http://snapcrackleandpops.blogspot.co.uk/2014/02/izmaz-first-lp.html

Kalinnikov said...

Can you please reup the Adrive link is expired? Thanks so much.

Anonymous said...

yes please re up the link :)



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Anonymous said...

HI
The song posted here does not actually match the J card.The song is by another group called Archach and the name of the album is "Aglifan" .

Anonymous said...

Thank you anonymous. I think you're right, this is an early Archach album supplied with the wrong cover. I noticed a few comments in Arabic on the YouTube video saying the same.
Mr Tear

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your interest in Berber music.
The singer Moulay Ali Chouhad who is singing here was actually a member in Izmaz in his beginning before he formed his own group named Archach.You can consult this website for more berber music' xtratachlhit' as well as some youtube channels like ait omarg or berafan 75