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N'Ssi N'Ssi

4.9 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Audio CD, March 4, 1994
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Cheb (young) Khaled was a rebel in his day, an Algerian punk whose music blended racy lyrics with cheesy synths and drum machines in a sort of North African '80s techno. By the time he recorded this CD, he had dropped the Cheb and found that there was a whole world of sounds to choose from. Varying tracks were produced by Don Was and Phillipe Eidel. Eidel added a more lush, North African string orientation, while Was's tracks were pure-pop full of funky bass and R&B horns. Khaled's voice had matured as well, giving him assurance without losing that rebel edge. This recording had a lot of detractors when it came out, deriding it for being a betrayal of the rai "tradition." This is patently absurd, given that rai itself was only a generation old, and was created as a revolt against tradition. With N'ssi N'ssi, Khaled had grown, and so had his music. --Louis Gibson

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Serbi Serbi
  2. Herbou
  3. Adieu
  4. Chebba
  5. Les Ailes
  6. Alech Tradi
  7. Bakhta
  8. N' Ssi N' Ssi
  9. Zine A Zine
  10. Abdel Kader
  11. El Marsem


Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 4, 1994)
  • Original Release Date: February 28, 1994
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Fontana Polydor
  • ASIN: B000005HU1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #224,903 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
true story I: i was getting married in africa and we had to get a band. i was traveling so my wife and best friend go out to check out the recommended band and come back with a report that "they can play anything" and "want to know what you want to hear." veritable human jukeboxes. right. so if these guys are so accomplished, let them try this on for size, and i flip them a tape of "n'ssi n'ssi."
a couple of weeks later, i stumble into the wedding reception and this band strikes up a dead-on perfect version of "serbi serbi." they had everything but the steel guitar. threw in a cover of "n'ssi n'ssi" to prove it wasn't fluke. came up to me afterwards and asked if i had anymore khaled tapes. wanted to learn more songs. heard that they now cover "didi" and "aisha" as well.
true story II: my buddy, who doesn't speak a word of arabic, walks into my house and "serbi serbi" comes up on the player. "this guy has lost his girl." i guess some things are universal.
the lesson in all of this, is if you're interested in hearing some new music, or rai, or khaled, or you're just the Writer from running times who wants to know what world record marathoner khaled khannouchi listens to in his car, check this out. you won't be disappointed. i've got african wedding bands and college professors the world over as my witnesses.
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Format: Audio CD
Even though this is one of the older Rai CDs out there (1993), it is still, by far and away, the very best I've heard. And I have been listening. If you're new to Rai, this is definitely the one to hook you. If you're not new, you still must have it. And if you have no idea what Rai is, but you know how to appreciate that Quincy Jones style funk, then check out what this MUSICAL MASTER does with that American homegrown sound.
However, if all Khaled did was mix American funk production with traditional music, he would be just another good world music artist. But try to wrap your mind around a mélange of North African arab lyrics and insruments that incorporate funk, tango, jazz, and Mediterranean salsa, backed by a doumbec percussion, played by an airtight band that just locks every time.
I'm ready for the concert!
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Format: Audio CD
This is my 4th CD fro Cheb Khaled...Rai is my favourite type of music..the mixture of arabic style music with western beats with a touch of meditteranean music...makes up a great CD..not to mention Khaled's exotic voice, extraordinary personality and his sweet ever-so-smiling-face!! This is one of my Top 5 CDs...
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Format: Audio CD
I have finally discovered why the elusive and famous chase-scene track Alech Taadi from the movie The Fifth Element was missing from the Eric Serra soundtrack score; It's not his song (though, there are striking resemblances instrumentwise between Khaled and Serra).This song itself is worth the album. It is richly flavored in French, Arabic, and Spanish(salsa) sounds.
The rest of the entire album is just as rewarding for the listener as well. Khaled's music not only transcends styles or genres in pop,Arabic, electronica, etc. but it is true that music like this is universally global !I never knew what Rai music was about or what it sounded like (I'm sure I need more education on it). However, I know what I like...and to just "like" this 1993 Khaled project is an understatement. From the first to the last track on the first listen of the entire disc left me in a mesmerized and impressionable daze !Do not pass this gem up nor take it at face value for it's intoxicating and danceable pop rhythms; It is so much more. The helping hand from Don Was proves invaluable as well...
Now, I can truly understand when my friends (who are non-Spanish or do not speak or understand Spanish) used to say about listening to Spanish music,"That is beautiful music,though I don't understand the lyrics !" N'Ssi, N'Ssi c.d. jacket slip cover contains the lyrics from Arabic to English; The lyrics are poetically astounding in talking about broken hearts and other daily personal human experiences (in the English translation). I would only marvel at the possibility of hearing Khaled put out a project sung in English or Spanish. --- Anyway,it's all UNIVERSAL !...
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Format: Audio CD
I bought this album mainly because Alech Taadi is featured in the cab chase scene in The Fifth Element. I had also previously heard various rai artists in Mamoun's Falafel Restaurant in New Haven, CT, but wasn't enamored enough to actually go out and purchase anything. Now that I've bought this album, I'm a convert. Rai is so dang cool; it flows and moves and twists and turns and fully makes you feel like moving. It's definitely for anyone who likes reggae or good dance techno. Go get it!
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Format: Audio CD
Rai is getting a little attention these days because of that hit song Sting did with Cheb Mami. But Sting's tune is lame, watered down yuppie music if you ask me. I have an awesome compilation called 'He Rai' from a French label that's not available anymore featuring Khaled and Mami and a bunch of other Rai superstars. I listen to that all the time. This one by Khaled before he got too commercial sounding for his own good is another excellent disc. This is Arab party-Rock fusion at its best. These tunes soar into your head like whirling dervishes in the desert sun and burn a permanent place in your imagination. Get it or suffer a definite lack.
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