Mohamed Rouicha

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Mohamed Rouicha with his Loutar

Mohamed Rouicha ( Central Atlas Tamazight ⵎⵓⵃⴰⵎⵎⴷ ⵔⵡⵉⵛⴰ Muḥammed Rwica ; born January 1, 1950 in Khenifra , † January 17, 2012 in Khénifra ) was a Moroccan composer, musician and singer.


Of Berber descent and from a modest background, Mohamed Rouicha left school - as was customary at the time - at the age of eleven. At the age of 14 he began to play on the loutar ; In the same year, the Moroccan radio station RTV brought out a record, in which he participated. In the following years he played mainly at weddings and festive events and sang mostly traditional chansons from the Central Atlas Tamazight -language repertoire of Berber musicians. He later composed many of his own songs and wrote texts (also in Arabic) on general topics such as love, nature, life, suffering and death, but also on social injustice. His real career began only with his second record release in 1979. He usually appeared together with two or three frame drum or tar players and with three or four accompanying singers; however, his pieces often contain improvised solo parts - especially in the intro ( taqsim ).

Mohamed Rouicha died in January 2012 after heart problems attributed to his heavy cigarette consumption. His most famous song was and is Inass, Inass (German: "Tell him, tell him ... what should I do with this life ..."), which he played over and over again during his performances.


His preferred instrument was the loutar (or luthar ), originally two, but today mostly three or four-stringed modification of the black African gimbri or the Arabic oud , which is widely used by musicians in the Berber regions of Morocco. The body of this stringed instrument is made from one piece of wood and covered with a - sometimes untanned - goat skin so that it can also be drumming on. The loutar generated compared to the guitar or lute rather rough and hard sounds, typical of the total of more rhythm-driven Berber music are.

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