Tinariwen are the kings and queens of ‘Assouf’ or guitar poetry from the Sahara Desert. Since the first Festival in the Desert in 2001, which they helped to organise, the band have become one of the most successful and exciting musical exports ever to emerge from west Africa. The founding members spent the 1980s holed-up in Libyan military camps dreaming of dignity and self-determination for their own people, the Kel Tamashek of the southern Sahara, and singing songs for a entire generation of young Touareg. Their rolling yearning grooves and uncompromising messages of simplicity and freedom, distilled over twenty years of struggle, rebellion and exile, have earned them two BBC World Music Award nominations, countless accolades and citations, the attention of high-profile fans such as Robert Plant, Santana, Edge and Thom Yorke, and the enduring respect of their own people. Their latest album ‘Aman Iman’ made the top 10 albums of 2007 in the Observer Music Magazine, Songlines, the Independent, Word Magazine, HMV Choice, fRoots amongst many others.