Yemen blues: an hour with Ravid Kahlani
Join the Journeys Podcast for an eclectic episode in which Ravid Kahalani, founder of Yemen Blues, takes us through his musical influences and improvises a song on his gimbri.
Ravid Kahalani is the founder of the Israeli band Yemen Blues, who have played in many a music festival across the world, from New York’s Summer Stage to Denmark’s Roskilde.
Kahalani was born in Israel to parents who were very attached to their Yemeni roots. As a child, Kahalani was taught traditional Yemeni chants and was sent to religious courses with a Yemeni rabbi. He dropped out of school at the age of 15, and after a short stint acting and dancing, he finally realized that his real passion in life was music. He tried his luck with a number of activities, ranging from Serbian church music to a collaboration with the highly acclaimed Israeli musician Idan Raichel. In 2010, Kahalani formed Yemen Blues, whose music has a mixture of Yemeni and West African influences, and fuses funk, soul, blues and jazz. The band’s songs are written in a Yemeni dialect of Arabic, with a bit of Hebrew and gibberish thrown in for good measure.
Marie Lou Williams – St Martin De Porres
Archie Shepp – Attica Blues
Prince – The Truth
Habib Koite – Sirata
Yemen Blues – Trape La Verite
Yemen Blues – Baraca
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