El Habib Louai and the Amazigh Neo-Beat Band at Zeitgeist Theater _lowres

Photo provided by the Neo Beat band - Poet Singer El Habib Louai, standing, plays the Moroccan castagnettes with Mohamed Ennajihi on guitar, seated left, and El Habib Hassan Bendouz, percussion. El Habib Louai and the Amazigh Neo-Beat Band will present poetry and music from Morocco at 9:30 p.m. Friday, July 31 at Zeitgeist Theater, 1618 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd.

El Habib Louai and the Neo-Beat Amazigh Band will present poetry and music from Morocco at 9:30 p.m. July 31 at Zeitgeist Theater, 1618 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. Also performing with Habib, Hassan Bendouz and Mohamed Ennajihi will be New Orleans saxophonist Ray Moore and tabla player Andrew McLean.

The Neo-Beat Amazigh Band describes itself as a group of poets and musicians who believe in the powers of spoken and written word to help create a better world. It is a band that brings together music and poetry in a combination that allows for both improvisation and composition, all blended with soulful music from North Africa.

Members of the group speak English, Arabic, French and their native Amazigh.

The members participate in the 100 Thousand Poets for Change, an international day of poetry that includes an annual New Orleans event. The band voices its preoccupation with themes and issues ranging from social justice, equality, freedom of expression and political transparency to ecological sustainability, interfaith dialogue and peace.

Lead poet, translator and musician Louai is originally from Taroudant, Morocco. In 2013, Louai went on a tour of America as a recipient of a scholarship from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado. While at Jack Kerouac School, he performed with internationally celebrated artists such as Anne Waldman, the founder of Jack Kerouac School with Allen Ginsberg; Thurston Moore; and Ambrose Bye.

Tickets are $10 and available at www.zeitgeistnola.org. For information, contact New Orleans’ 100 Thousand Poets for Change coordinator, Dennis Formento, by email at mesechabe@hotmail.com, or call (504) 400-1059.