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FETHI TABET (article first published : 2008-03-8)

On March 22, the Alliance Française of Durban will present a concert featuring French-Algerian musician Fethi Tabet and his group of eight musicians.

Born at Sidi-Bel-Abbès in Algeria at the beginning of the 1950s in a family from Tlemcen – cradle of Arabo-Andalusian music, Fethi Tabet grew up in Oran. When he was six years old, he watched one such orchestra on television and, that day, knew that he would be a musician.

From then on, his life changed and everything he did became an opportunity to play music. At eleven years old, he entered the grand Arabo-Andalusian School of Cheikh Sekkal. There, every day, he studied singing, poetry, the violin, the viola, the lute and percussions. The traditional oral teaching he received in that school, based on rigour, hard work, humility and respect, determined the rest of his life. Having become singer, musician and a famous composer, Fethi Tabet left his country for France in 1980. He began a new life in Paris, then settled in Montpellier in 1983.

His group is fashioned in his image - a multicultural and mixed family used to all sorts of experiences. The group is based on a strong friendship, gathering musicians who are all orchestra leaders with diverse musical influences, from France, Tunisia, Morocco, Cameroon, Senegal, Mali and Brazil.

Fethi Tabet offers a hot and powerful Andalusian-style dance music that immediately distinguishes him from singers such as Khaled or Cheb Mami. The percussions and the choirs hold a central place while the violin, the guitar, the accordion and the saxophones play bright melodies carried out by his wild lute. His incomparable voice sings life with emotion and humour, crossing different traditional and popular Maghrebian styles under the joint influence of Africa, South America and the Mediterranean.

Fethi Tabet appears at the Alliance Francaise at 22 Sutton Crescent, Morningside (opposite Sutton Park) on March 22 at 19h00. Tickets R60 (R30 for Alliance members and students) Bookings on 031 312 9582




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