Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage
Khaira Arby performs on
Khaira Arby performs on Mountain Stage. Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage
- "Tchini Tchini"
Khaira Arby, Timbuktu's reigning queen of Malian soul, makes her first visit to Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W. Va. For 20 years Arby has sung in the ancient desert city of Timbuktu, where she has the following of a hometown heroine. Backed by the muscled grooves of an elite band, this is Arby's first extensive tour outside of her home country.
Born in the village of Abaradjou in the Sahara Desert, Arby is heavily influenced by a diverse ethnic background. She sings in the varied indigenous languages of her native Sahara, with instrumentation that often ranges from electric guitar and bass, to calabash, ngoni, traditional violin and percussion. Arby's full-throated, supple vocals carry her energetic, electric band between modern and traditional Malian desert blues for a sound rarely heard on Mountain Stage.
This segment originally ran on May 12, 2011.