Jambase | Club d’Elf Collaborator Brahim Fribgane Has Died

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Club d’Elf Collaborator Brahim Fribgane Has Died

“He was truly the soul of Club d’Elf.”

By Andy Kahn Mar 5, 2024  2:31 pm PST

Moroccan oud player and percussionist Brahim Fribgane, who has frequently performed with Club d’Elf, has died. Further details regarding the cause of death have not been shared.

Club d’Elf was formed in 1998 by Boston-based bassist, sintir/guimbri player Mike Rivard. An early participant in the ongoing project, Fribgane was one of several musicians who infused Moroccan elements into the collective known for its ever-evolving lineup.

statement posted by Club d’Elf, which called Fribgane the “soul” of the group, read:

We are devastated at the loss of our dear friend and bandmate Brahim Fribgane. Besides being one of the most soulful musicians who ever walked the planet, Brahim possessed a huge heart that enveloped all those around him and just made you feel good. This is a tough one, folks and we won’t see the likes of him again. He was truly the soul of Club d’Elf and we are reeling to comprehend a world without him in it. Our deepest condolences go out to his family and friends and all who loved him, and all who were touched by his music. RIP, broheem.

A biography from an archived Fribgane website stated:

Born and raised in Morocco, Brahim Fribgane brings to his music the rich and varied musical styles he grew up with – North African, Gnawa, Berber, Arabic and Andalusian music. His oud style ranges from the clear, “singable” melodies of folkloric Berber songs to beautifully complex and soulful Arabic music, to the fusion of jazz, samba, reggae or Indian music.

Brahim grew up in a neighborhood in Casablanca, Morocco, where great musicians and bands emerged, like Nass Alghiwan and Lamchaheb. He absorbed the music played by these bands, as well as being influenced by the traditional music he heard since childhood. Brahim began playing for weddings and parties when he was 13 years old.

In his early 20s, he moved to New York City, where more opportunities were available to him musically, and he shared his culture with diverse artists in the U.S. Living in New York City, through diverse musical collaborations and experiences, he was able to experiment and develop his style, which is a unique blend of the influences from childhood and international musical influences and traditions

Brahim has had the privilege of performing with such amazing artists as Peter Gabriel, Paula Cole, Adam Rudolph, Hindi Zahra, Dr. L. Subramaniam, Hassan Hakmoun, Club d’Elf, Sami Yusuf, Will Calhoun, Zakir Hussein, Giovanni Hidalgo, Hamid Drake, Selva Ganesh, Steve Gorn, Larry Coryell, Reggie Workman, Hubert Laws, Corey Segal, Adam Deitch, Pete Seeger, Peter Yarrow, Amit Chattergee, Medeski Martin & Wood, to name a few.

He has recorded for Harry Belafonte, Paula Cole, Club d’Elf, Jamsheid Sharifi, Leni Stern, DJ Logic, Morphine, and other talented artists.

Recently, Fribgane performed with Tuareg bands Tinariwen and Terakaft, among others.

 
 
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