The Crossroads of Sound: Gnawa Music in Morocco

avatar Mark Fonseca Rendeiro
Recorded in Essouira, Morocco
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avatar Imad Guest

There are only a hand full of places in the world that come close to Essouira when it comes music and art. For hundreds of years this place has been a crossroads for trade, culture, and a self-expression. In 2018, from traditional music to spontanous improvised sound, that tradition continues.
Today on the podcast we’re recording in Essouira, Morocco, with the great Imad telling the story of music and why this place was, is, and will remain so vital to anyone who loves art and the beauty of spontaeous collaboration.

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Love in a Dubai Taxi

avatar Mark Fonseca Rendeiro Moderator Amazon Wishlist Icon

12091068634_60847d595cUntil now you’ve heard stories of individual taxi drivers and entrepeneurs in the UAE. Today Im going to bring you the voices of several taxi drivers, as they speak about probably the most common theme of my trip: LOVE.

Start talking with a taxi driver in the city of gold and chances are you will get to the topics of relationships, marriage, love and family. Many will tell you that all these things are very closely related and extremely important. Their outlooks and philosophies vary, from the very traditional to the free thinkers who would go as far as to defy their family.  Stories vary from charming to frustrating, and from beautiful to deeply sad.

Today on the podcast, Love in a Dubai Taxi, stories and reflections on love from taxi drivers in the UAE.

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The Creative Soul of Jumeirah Beach

avatar Mark Fonseca Rendeiro Moderator Amazon Wishlist Icon

ctrp465_140215Somewhere along the neverending Jumeirah Beach Road in Dubai, within view of world famous sky scrapers and people enjoying themselves on the beach, you’ll find a little oasis of healthy food and unique style. The place is Comptoir 102, a concept cafe created and run by my guests on today’s podcast: Alexandra de Montaudouin and Emma Sawko. While their place may not be far from downtown, this little cafe is in a very different world from the brand name corporate culture that took root in Dubai more than a decade ago.

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Ali Al Saloom: Connecting the World with Emirati Culture

avatar Mark Fonseca Rendeiro Moderator Amazon Wishlist Icon
avatar Ali Al Saloom Guest

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Ali Al Saloom, better known on the internet as Ask Ali, came on the scene in the same way many of us podcasters, bloggers, and other independent content creators did over the past 10 years; with an idea and a dream.  His goal, to teach the world about his people and his culture, to dispel myths and contribute factual information about the UAE.  The result: thousands of published answers to all kinds of questions about the UAE, a successful cultural consultancy service, and an internationally recognized representative of a country and a culture that until recently were little known or poorly understood

A pioneer in both new media and internet outreach, Ali can run down the list of reasons people around the world are coming to this region and he is proud of what his nation has accomplished. At the same time he sees the risks and responsibilities that come with success and wealth, as he talks about the things that concern him in the near future.

While much of my journey has been about taxi drivers and the wisdom they can share about this place and life as a whole, a conversation with Ali Al Saloom provides a rare chance to hear from a citizen of this nation and to learn from his unique experience.

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