Four Female Moroccan-born singers that are Rockin' it
Updated: Jan 4
Introducing our favorite current Moroccan singers, you really want to know
The Moroccan music scene is colorful, vibrant and so soulful, reflecting the richness of its culture with its Andalusian, Berber, Raï, Chaabi and Gnawa influences. When traveling to Morocco, music becomes an inherent part of your experience there. Music welcomes you at every corner, from rooftop jam sessions, to evening street performances in the old city squares, to the traditional Moroccan beats pulsing in the desert. It is no wonder that such fabulous musicians have sprouted from this extraordinarily culturally-fertile land.
While it might be a while before you can travel to Morocco, we invite you to treat yourself to the sounds of these four fiercely-talented musicians. We didn't set out to compile a list of female-only singers, but as it turns out our, by-far, favorite Moroccan singers happen to also be inspiring women who with a lot of hard work succeeded in gaining international recognition. It is time that you heard about them too.
Here's our list of the best current Moroccan musicians to add to your playlist
Malika is a Moroccan-French-American singer, composer and music producer. She was born in Southern Morocco, in a little village called Ouled Teima. The family emigrated to Paris when Malika was a child, but her home maintained a strong Moroccan cultural identity. Malika began her musical education learning to play the clarinet player and ultimately continued to train as a jazz musician. In 2004 she relocated to New York.
Her unique style incorporates native Berber, Gnawa and Chaabi sounds, the intellectual elegance of French pop, and jazzy rhythms and techniques. She sings in Moroccan Arabic, Berber, French and English.
Find Malika on iTunes
Oum El Ghait Benessahraoui, born in Casablanca, is an acclaimed Moroccan singer, composer and lyricist. Oum who is a Muslim, grew up singing in gospel choirs following the steps of her idol Whitney Huston. Despite her musical upbringing, after graduating high school she decided to study architecture. After getting her diploma, however, Oum realized she wanted to completely dedicate herself to music.
Oum launched her musical career in the early 2000s with hip-hop and R&B inspired songs in English and Moroccan Darija. Over the years she has become an international star with her unique Gnawa-pop-jazz fusion and her stunning velvety voice. Her third album, The Soul of Morocco (2013), was the first to achieve international distribution. Her YouTube videos receive millions of views and her interanational concert tours are sold-out.
Find Oum on iTunes
Hindi Zahara is a Moroccan singer and a self-taught multi-instrumentalist. Zahra was raised by her Moroccan mother, a dancer and actress, in Khouibga, Morocco, but at the age of fifteen, she left school and moved to Paris to live with her father.
Hindi sings mostly in English. Her music is an enchanting mix of jazz and world music with gentle touches of Arabic and Berber. She is an incredibly intelligent performer with a mesmerizing voice that draws you deep into her musical universe.
Find Hindi on Spotify
Asmae Charifi (AC)
Asmae is a 20-year-old, up and coming, self-taught Moroccan musician. She began making music videos in her bedroom and posted them on Instagram and Facebook. Today she has a loyal Instagram following of 250K fans from around the world. Asmae combines English and Arabic in her music.
Asmae is a free spirit, with a fiercely independent and convivial personality and the sweetest, comforting voice. She is just starting out her musical career, but we have no doubt this girl is going places.
Find Asmae on YouTube
Get to know more talented Moroccan artisans