As a worthy heir of the Gania dynasty that has counted so much in the culture of Morocco, Maâlem Moktar Gania from Essaouira is today an essential actor of Gnaoua music.


Initiated by these pillars of the Gnaouie tradition that were his father Boubker and his brother Mahmoud, the young Moktar performed all over the world with the Gania family, but then also with Randy Weston, Bill Laswell, Pharoah Sanders, Carlos Santana and many others …


The meeting between Maâlem Moktar Gania (younger brother of the unavoidable and late master Mahmoud Gania) and the group Gnawa Soul has created in Essaouira an innovative style at the border of the Gnawa spirit, the great oriental melodies of the Maghreb and the vibrations of the West African culture.






Some talented foreign musicians joined the Gnawa musicians for this recording: the French Géraldine Laurent (saxophone) and Jean-Marie Ecay (guitar) as well as the sublime Israeli singer of Moroccan origin Neta Elkayam and her producer Amit Cohen – Jacques Sanjuan, veteran artistic director of Universal Music France, provided the artistic direction.

The mixing was done in Austin by American engineer and multiple Grammy Award winner Chris Shaw. The mastering was finalized in London at Studio Metropolis by Tony Cousins (Adele, Massive Attack, Amadou & Mariam, Peter Gabriel…).


Moktar Gania and Gnawa Soul appear as the new ambassadors of a music linking the Maghreb and West Africa celebrating the marriage of body and spirit that delivers the soul, whether through ballads dedicated to the cosmic elemental or rhythmic tracks from the spiritual trance.




Moktar Gania’s album “Gnawa Soul” is scheduled for release in May 2022 on the Nuits d’Afrique label, in partnership with Nomad Roots.

For the first time in North America, MOKTAR GANIA & GNAWA SOUL will present their new album during a concert event at the 36th edition of the Festival International Nuits d’Afrique, on Monday, July 18th, at the Fairmount Theatre at 8pm.

Festival international Nuits d'Afrique - 36e