Emel Mathlouthi

Born in Tunis, Emel is a songwriter, composer, guitarist, and singer. She brings an amazing brand new sound to Tunisian music. Hearing her voice, we can evoke Joan Baez, Sister Marie Keyrouz, and the Lebanese diva Fairouz … Endowed with outstanding vocal capacities, her captivating style is sometimes lyrical, with strong dominating rock, oriental and Trip Hop, allying tactfully, the music of the Maghreb and the Middle East melting it with a palette sometimes Tzigane, sometimes flamenco, Celtic, Gnawa or Ragga. Self-taught, she began her artistic career at the age of 8 on the stage of the small amphitheater in Ibn Sina’s neighborhood in the suburbs of Tunis where she lived until the age of 25 years old… This stage built there in this arbitrarily triggered in her, the madness and love of art that never deserted her later. Thanks to her father’s records she bathed since her early childhood in classical music, and Arabic as well as Latin American protest music. Prior to the discovery of the Arab dissident scene through the idols of the revolutionary movements of the 70 s: the blind Egyptian singer Sheikh Imam and the Lebanese singer Marcel Khalifa, Bob Dylan and mainly Joan Baez who has greatly influenced her. She discovered the exhilaration and joy of singing around the age of 15 years and she could not stop since then. After performing in a rock band established in college, and experiencing the joys of the stage in different universities, She chose the guitar as fellow traveler and seized every opportunity to perform in public and show her music. Emel Mathlouthi is rapidly remarked for her scenic performances and especially for her ability to enchant and delight the audience. “Pain and pleasure mix , expand , become deeper to finally be engraved in the hearts forever… Her words are pain that gives birth to pleasure… Her music seems to emerge from a transcendent world…A world full of humanity , sensitivity , and feelings… Emel does not only sing with her voice, but with her body and her features have their own language too…” Encouraged by some friends, she began to write in Tunisian dialect in 2004 and continues to compose in that language as well as in standard Arabic and sometimes in french. After her arrival in France she discovered the pain and suffering of being far and nostalgic… Since that, she never stops working on developing a progressive and unexpected new style where a song is a story with lot of shifting enriched with thick poetry. Her songs are full of anger, sadness, love, patriotism to a country left to the hands of fate… full of hope, hope of freedom and delivery… of faith, disillusionment, and thoughts about the existence and the weaknesses of the human in front of the folly of his fellows. Success was « au rendez vous » and after great collaborations with Tricky, french artists such as Charlie Couture, Jean Jacques Milteau, Meï Teï Shô and a selection in the first edition of the RMC-doualiya music awards in 2006, she’s becoming one of the main figures of the nowadays Arabic music. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.