Tinariwen is a band of Tuareg musicians from the Sahara Desert region of northern Mali. The band was formed in 1979 in refugee camps in Libya but returned to Mali after a cease-fire in the 1990s. Tinariwen has always been a collective of singers, songwriters, and musicians, who come together in different combinations to play concerts and to record. This is because of the nomadic lifestyle of the Tuareg people and the difficulties of transportation and communication in the Sahara region.
The group first started to gain a following outside the Sahara region in 2001, with the release of “The Radio Tisdas Sessions,” and their performances at the Festival au Désert in Mali and at the Roskilde festival in Denmark.
Their popularity rose internationally with the release of the critically acclaimed “Aman Iman” album in 2007. The band released their fifth album “Tassili” in August 2011. During the 54th Annual Grammy awards, Tinariwen won a Grammy for Best World Music Album Category.