Screening and Concert: Mdou Moctar/Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai (Rain the Color Blue With a Little Red In It)

Event Date: 

Saturday, October 14, 2017 - 6:30pm

Event Location: 

  • Multicultural Center

Event Price: 


6:30 - AKOUNAK screening
7:45 - Q&A with Prof. David Novak + Filmmaker Christopher Kirkley
8:15 - Carlos Niño Performance
9:00- Mdou Moctar Performance

Date: October 14

Location: Multicultural Center

Admission: Free

Mdou Moctar is a pioneer of Tuareg guitar music, a style that has recently shown up on music charts and at North American music venues and festivals thanks to the popularity of groups like Tinariwen, Bombino, and Terakaft. Based in Agadez in Northern Niger, the youngest guitarist, singer, and songwriter Mdou Moctar is becoming increasingly recognized or his own musical experimentation and boundary-pushing work. 

His 2008 psychedelic-tinged Saharan desert-rock LP Anar was met with success via MP3 networks throughout West Africa. One of its standout tracks was featured on Music from Saharan Cellphones: Volume 1, a 2011 album of rare music complied by U.S. record label Sahel Sounds. This month, Sahel Sounds just released their fifth Mdou Moctar album, Sousoume Tamachek, and his first U.S. tour will appear in person at UCSB’s MultiCultural Center Theater. 

Mdou’s relationship with Christopher Kirkley—the founder of this Portland, Oregon-based world-music label—blossomed further with the 2015 release of Kirkley’s film Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai (Rain the Color Blue With a Little Red In It), which not only pays tribute to Prince’s hit movie Purple Rain, but also to the 1973 Jamaican cult-classic reggae film The Harder They Come. The first ever Tuareg-language film, Akounak tells a fictional story of the struggle of a guitarist trying to make it against all odds in Agadez. (The title reflects how there is no word for “purple” in the Tamasheq language.)

KCSB-FM and UCSB’s Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Music (CISM) will co-present the area debut of Akounak, immediately followed by a conversation and Q&A with writer/director Kirkley and UCSB Professor of Music David Novak. (Showtime is 6:30pm.)

Next up will be an eclectic music set by Los Angeles-based DJ Carlos Niño (of Dublab and KPFK fame), followed by Mdou Moctar and his band performing live at 9pm, a set sure to blend soulful and bluesy guitar work with danceable and high-energy rhythms too.


UCSB’s MultiCultural Center and CISM co-sponsor this all-ages event which is free and open to the public.