A revolution, an edgy voice, a musical fusion, unique Roots-sound, thought-provoking lyrics and trance like rhythms.
Haydar Hamdi incarnates the voice of the free youth of Tunisia.
Native of southern Tunisia, Haydar has grown up with the sound of North African music with strong engaging lyrics. In his hometown of Gafsa, music is revered sacred. At a time when freedom of expression was repressed, music became a strategy of resistance more than just an artistic entertainment. Haydar released his new album “FiKRA” in France in Summer 2015. The latest has a stronger Tunisian Dub sound, transcendental reggae and Tunisian ethnic rhythms, an interweaving of sounds still relatively unknown.
Son of an actor and writer, Haydar found himself surrounded by actors, singers, painters, poets, filmmakers from a very young age. In his teen years, he wrote his first songs and joined the great family of Tunisian artists.
In the summer of 2009, he entered the alternative Tunisian scene with BarbaRoots. A band playing roots socially and politically engaged music with several influences such Reggae, Gnawa, Afrobeat and Dub. BarbaRoots was a first seed for a revolutionary and free sound which was easily recognised. Under the dictatorship groups as such, couldn’t record or sell their music, which forced them to organise and perform their own concerts underground which excluded them from the mainstream scenes of Tunisia.
Despite the oppression, Haydar continued to write music and faced censorship, like many other young Tunisian artists as the lyrics were considered too sensitive for the government back then.
In 2011, the Tunisian people wanted freedom and the youth wanted their rights. After a month of demonstrations, the fall of the Ben Ali regime marked a change in Tunisia. Music moved into another dimension and the alternative Tunisian scene known for its engaging revolutionary texts took centre stage.
Haydar Hamdi then played Carthage, Hammamet, El Kef, Gafsa and Tunis, His music has become widely recognised.
In 2012, Granted an artist visa, he moved to Paris and began a new project. Under his own name, he released a debut EP “404” in reference to censorship in the Ben Ali era. The EP introduced a new sound and other influences, including a Kanoun, a Reggae Roots groove, vocal effects, drums, guitar and a bass groove. The Oriental Dub. A new sound that saw Haydar’s career lift off. His lyrics have evolved and matured. Haydar is more direct and clear: “Pouvoir Au Peuple” (Power to the People). He is inspired by his daily life and his musical integrity increases.
Since than, Haydar has performed a list of concerts: Divan du Monde, New Morning, Sunset Sunside, Chat Noir, The Bellevilloise, etc.