Mdou Moctar, a Tuareg from Agadaz in Niger Republic, has arrived Kaduna to meet Usman Mohammed Gashash, a teenage guitarist and son of Mohammed Gashash, in Kaduna. Moctar, who is meeting with the teenage guitarist for the first time, is expected to encourage and prepare him in perfect handling of various musical instruments so that he can be participating in all international music concerts in Africa and, in the long run, the world in general.
Moctar, of the Tuareg people (Imuhagh, in Berber language) are, indeed, essentially Nomadic Berber people living through the Saharan Desert in the North of Africa. Tuareg people have as well dwelled in Niger, Mali, Algeria, Libya and Burkina Faso, respectively.
Moctar, the trainer, pointed out clearly that he is an international Guitarist, Drummer, Flute and stage performance based in France, and travels round the world playing traditional music, who recently returned to his home country, Niger, and decided to visit Nigeria with the aim of teaching the talented young Nigerian musician in Kaduna.
“Tuareg musical instruments, with which ‘Tamasheq Music’ is also known, are being used in preparing him for the First African Youth Guitar Festival in the Federal Republic of Niger,” he said.
Moctar added that “I was astonished when I read in a newspaper about the talent of the young Usman; also seeing his young age and how he handles his guitar encouraged me to come to Nigeria and train him on the best ways to handle all musical instruments so as to make the best among his age-mates in the entire Africa.
“Our traditional Guitar, Drum, with other local instruments represent voices of Africa, and the hit of the music is purely rhythm of African tone that has a unique message of spreading peace and unity among the people of universe.
Moctar said “we are Tuareg, and Tuareg music is a widespread style of Berber music, which is a famous and typical Tuareg instrument, which is known as the Imzad (also named Amzad) – a kind of one-string violin. The Imzad is made from calabash (a Cucurbitaceous plant close to gourd) or wood and covered by an animal skin; the string and the bow are made from horse hair. It is generally played by women, while accompanying asak songs,” he added.
Since his arrival in Kaduna, northern Nigeria, he has been training the young boy different techniques, patent best ways to handling all compassionate of sweet musical instruments.
The international musician says, “The Tuareg musical genre first encompasses traditional song genres such as Tisiway, traditional chants-based poems; Tehengemmit, elders’ slow songs; Asak, songs accompanied by Imzad, women songs accompanied by Tender, a typical tambour made with Goat skin; and children songs like Bellulla played with Lips techniques accompanied by Fadangama, which is a small one-string instrument; Odili, a wooden flute made from sorghum and Gidga, which is also a wooden instrument made with Irons sticks.”
He said my “goal is to see him becoming future best African guitarist, which can make him represent Nigeria African in all music competitions round the world.”
Moctar said “Worldwide, people know him as one of the best traditional guitarists, who play with many international musicians and, as he says, he is planning to organize the first African Youth Guitar Festival in Africa, so as to encourage youth in Africa be capable of participating in various traditional African musical concerts, to enable them always make them remember their norms and culture, and their history.
According to him, this is to ensure that every talented African youth musician across Africa participates, in order to merge in one place for the concert, so as to select one of the best in the region that could represent the entire Africa in the contest of world-classic musical competition.
“I want Usman to participate in the First International Guitar Concert in Niger Republic, and this will encourage other little talented musicians to be showcasing their natural gifts and talents; and this is part of the talent-hunter for young African guitarists across the region.”
Responding on behalf of his family band, Usman Miller Mohammed Gashash, a 10 years old boy, who has just graduated from his primary school, said, “I am happy seeing an international musician coming all the way from another country to teach me how to be the best guitar performer.
“He taught me many things, which include how to hold guitar, and many other musical instruments, and even right now am still learning many things from him, which is totally different from other musical teachers that are currently teaching me at home with my brothers and sisters.”
Usman specifically said, “I will surely participate in the live concert with my team from Nigeria, hoping to meet and interact with other African children that are into music.
“Moctar invited me, and I accept his invitation for December, 2017, Guitar Concert; and this would be my first participation in an international music concert.”
Usman ended by calling on parents to always support their children in all developmental activities, while urging them not to discourage their kids in the search of becoming good leaders of tomorrow. “Am assuring African youth that I will contest and I will win, by God’s grace; and all I need is prayers and support from my parents, fans and my fellow Nigerians.”