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Nass el Ghiwane was formed in the late 60's by four young men from the poor district of Hay el Mohammadi in industrial Casablanca. Laarbi Batma (who came from the Chaouia region to Kariane Jdid) met Boujemaa Hagour (who came form the Tata (Morocco) region to Derb Moulay Cherif) through their mutual friend Omar Essayed. They were all performing in the theater troupe of Tayeb Essidiki. While performing the piece "Al Majdoub" for Parisian crowds in the summer of 1969, they had the idea of using traditional music as a way to express themselves onstage.