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Primarily studio-based, Salamat was the brainchild of Mahmoud Fadl (b. 12 September 1955, Cairo, Egypt), who gathered together a group of the finest musicians and singers of the Nubian culture (including members of Ali Hassan Kuban’s band), at El Araby Studio, Cairo, in September 1993 to record ‘Nubian Al Jeel’ (new generation) music. Fadl’s intention was to create a sound that was deeply rooted in Nubian musical tradition and yet open to influences from Egypt and beyond. The result was El Mambo Soudani (‘The Sudanese Mambo’), a mix of raw percussion and wailing brass and vocals, with Pan-African, Latin American and Mediterranean influences alongside the Nubian and Arabic roots. A year later the musicians from the original Salamat recording session performed alongside the Musicians Of The Nile at the Heimetklange Festival in Berlin. Staying on in Germany, the two groups recorded Salam Delta together. Produced by Hijaz Mustapha (of 3 Mustaphas 3), the album combined the modern, urban ‘al jeel’ style of Salamat with the Musicians Of The Nile’s unrefined traditionalism. 1996’s Nubiana added a string section and electric guitars to the mix. Soulful and accessible, the album featured memorable hooklines and, on one track, reggae influences. In 1997 Fadl released The Drummers Of The Nile, on which he worked with a group of percussionists to explore the various rhythms and musical styles found along the banks of the Nile. By 1998 the group were well established as a world music institution. As well as releasing a new Salamat album, Ezzayakoum (featuring much the same mix as on their previous release and yet remaining fresh-sounding), there was also Fadl’s instrumental Love Letter From King Tut-Ank-Amen, featuring the percussionist performing a collection of classic Egyptian love songs with a string section, a trumpeter and an accordionist.

Years Active:

'90s, '00s