The Tuareg are a people intensely proud of their culture. These nomadic camel herders and caravaners have dominated the Sahara for a thousand years. For many of them their way of life has changed little over the centuries Others have seen many transitions in recent years. Many Tuareg have been forced to abandon their nomadic way of life. With this transition and the passing of the present generation many of the cultural treasures-music, poetry, storytelling, artisanry-so prized by the Tuareg could be lost. A series of events, droughts, famine, oppression forced the younger generation into exile and eventually into a rebellion. A culture whose noble class had always been warriors and poets fought so that their culture might survive. They fought with guns and with music. They wrote songs to encourage their brothers to fight for their very cultural survival. Rooted in the traditional, a new kind of music emerged. Many of you heard this music when Tidawt came to the US in 2000, 2003 and 2006. They were also featured in the 2003 "Festival In The Desert" film and soundtrack.