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Rachid BERKANI / lute

Affectionately nickname ‘The Handsome one” was born on the 11th of September 1937 in Algiers, in the bosom of the Casbah where artists flourished; there he quickly developed a passion for Chaâbi.

Rachid Berkani got into the arts very young. His brother, Abderrahmane Berkani was a well known luthier and composer and Rachid used to go with him to rehearsals, concerts and traditional festivals. It was during that period that he met the great musician – Missoume.

Incredibly passionate about Chaabi music, the young Berkani trained hard and taught himself to play the lute, the guitar and the mandolin.

In 1963, Algerian radio launched a competition which Rachid Berkani took part in. At this time, he worked with the big names in Chaabi and Andalusian classical music such as Mustapha Skandrani, Belkayed Abdelghani Mohamed Kabour (called "The Tailor), Mohamed Rochidi (the" Chickh Namouss ") Kadour Cherchalli, Mohamed Mezghena, Moh Sghir Laama, and many others.
Rachid went on to win that competition and became the youngest member of the radio’s orchestra at that time.

This adventure lasted 36 years. Within this band, led by pianist Skandrani Mustapha, Rachid Berkani encountered the greatest figures of Algerian,(El Hadj Mohamed El Anka, El Boudjemaa Ankis), Tunisian, Moroccan and Egyptian music (Farid El Attrache).

He also dabbled in acting and obtained roles alongside Fadila Dziria, Saboundji, Farida El Hachemi Guerouabi to mention a few.

In 1999, Berkani retired but remained in contact with the art world. Then in 2005 he met Safinez Bousbia and joined the El Gusto Orchestra....

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