When I was leading music workshops (under Lollipops Crown Music/Arts Initiative) for the Ministry of Youth in Bensaliman, Morocco in June, the awesome officers at the US Embassy Bureau of Public Affairs offered to sponsor my band Zerobridge (from New York) to come to Morocco to play concerts and to do music workshops for kids. It happened and it was an amazing experience. I was so stoked to have the boys in the band come here. We were mobbed by awesome fans in every town we played throughout the country signing t-shirts, heads, arms, phones. We in the band certainly don’t get such attention in NY, so it was kinda nice. Although it was pretty akward when 15 year old girls slipped us their numbers. Some of the scenes on tour i’ll most remember: young girls wearing the traditional head covering throwing up fists and dancing and wanting to play drums and guitar; impromptu jam sessions with talented young Moroccan rappers and female R&B singers; having scores of fans asking for pictures and autographs with us; playing to 5,000 Moroccans in Meknes; seeing a group of traditional dancers from Saudi dance with a member of the US Embassy during our concert; and the beautiful drives through villages and mountains and coasts of Morocco.
During our workshops we had kids come up and try playing our own songs with us on stage. Usually we picked our song “How Long’ in which we had some kids sing the chorus with us and another group drum. It was magic man. We also had question and answer sessions about music and art, and we had jam sessions with talented rappers, singers, dancers from the audience. It was just simply inspiring to feel this overwhelming energy from the kids in each town…kids who were so amped and grateful and talented. Everyone we met on tour, be it the kids or the sound guys, or the Embassy staff…everyone truly inspired us and lifted our spirits. I only hope we did the same. Morocco is all about the union between music, rhythm, and spirituality. It was so refreshing to play for kids who were just eager to learn and to dance and to express themselves, unlike in NYC where crowds at shows can be pretty indifferent or jaded. And in the end, I think we accomplished some inspiring workshops for the kids too while also using music for building better understanding between America and the Arab world. Thanks to the US Embassy for hooking this up and for giving us equipment, a driver, a sound-man, and for booking the shows. And thanks to Morocco. Here are the vid links to each day on the tour and of the workshops we lead. I never dreamed our band from New York would be playing rock shows for youth in Morocco. Life is a trip.It was a dream that came to reality.
7/14: workshops with kids and private concert in Tassaout
7/15: workshops with kids and private concert in Beni Mallal
7/16: workshops with kids and private concert in El Jadia, Morocco
7/17: concert at Cinema Rif w The Candles in Tangier, Morocco
7/18: Volubilis Festival in Meknes Morocco
Mary and Mohammad from the US Embassy-Rabat, Morocco for their hard work and support
Mohammad, our awesome driver, and Ramadan, our beloved soundman!
Karima- for everything
K.D.–for being so cool
Micheal for filming Meknes
Big thanks to the beautiful inspiring people of Morocco for their support of Zerobridge!!