My name is Mariem Hassan. I have been active as a singer/songwriter since I was 20 years old. My career in music started in an unusual place, as I and my people have lived as refugees since the late 1970’s. In the camps, I began singing as a hobby, reading poetry and putting music to words that famously described my people and culture. But over time, I developed and refined my voice and started singing at the professional level. I found myself spending more and more time with other musicians and Saharawi poets. Sometimes we would spend weeks together, practicing and preparing for national festivals and other important cultural events.
In the late 90’s, a Spanish production company, called Nubenegra Productions, chose a group of Saharawi performers to tour internationally, and, after the tour was over I remained with the company to further my music career.
I have performed in many international festivals, earning awards alongside many other prominent artists and vocalists.
In total, I have produced four albums, each serving to convey various aspects of my Saharawi culture, history and most distinctively, our national struggle for independence. My first album was entitled, Wishes, followed by Throne, then El Aiun and most recently Dance, Sahara, Dance. Throughout my career as an artist and advocate for my nation I have received many threats and was even physically attacked on one occasion by Moroccans who attempted to silence the message I was conveying through my music. They were unsuccessful, as I have continued to press on in spite of such aggression.
It’s my hope that I have succeeded to give my listeners and fans a glimpse into the rich culture of the Saharawi people.