Arts + Culture

Bombino's Tuareg Guide to Touring the U.S.

Bombino brings us his guide to touring the U.S. as a Tuareg musician.


Our new City Guide series features our favorite artists dropping insider knowledge on the best spots to hit up in the places they know best. For our latest edition we took things on the road, enlisting the help of Niger's psychedelic nomad Bombino. Between recording earlier this year at Dan Auerbach's Nashville studio and becoming a step-inducing highlight of this summer's festival circuit, who better to ask for tips on navigating North America than the electric blues outlaw? Joined by bassist/manager Eric Herman (who also plays bass in Brooklyn's afro-gyspy-funk crew Mamarazzi), Bombino's Fender-wielding caravan drops its guide to touring the U.S. as a Tuareg musician.

Favorite Venue for Blues:

Bombino: Zombie Shop, Nashville

*Bombino at the Zombie Shop, Nashville. Photo by Diana Lee Zadlo.

Favorite Venue for Afrofunk:

Eric: Jackie O's, Athens, Ohio

Favorite set caught while on tour:

B: Gogol Bordello in Memphis.

E: Wood Brothers at Governor's Island.

Bluesiest City:

B: New Orleans.

E: New Orleans.

U.S. festival where the Festival au Désert spirit is most alive:

B: Globalquerque.

E: Burning Man.

Favorite North African dining experience:

B: A Tuareg restaurant in Montreal

Favorite Record Store:

B: Amoeba records, Berkeley, CA.

Best souvenir to take back to Niger:

B: A man gave me a beautiful silver bell yesterday. He said my music saved his life in the hospital and he wanted me to have it.

Favorite American Guitar to Play:

B: Cort and Fender guitars, for sure.

For more city guides read up on Alec Lomami's lowdown on Kinshasa and Christian Tiger School's favorite spots in Cape Town.

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