Aymen Goubaa: hunter of musical treasures

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Officially, Aymen Goubaa is 37 years old; however, this Tunisian music and computer enthusiast still enjoys a good treasure hunt. He then archives and shares the traditional gems he uncovers.
Profile by Emmanuel de Solère Stintzy.


Sitting among his countless keyboards (of both the computer and musical variety), Aymen Goubaa is bored. Suddenly, a traditional tune piques his interest and sweeps him away. He leaps to his feet and immediately exits his studio. His destination? Sidi Makhlouf in southern Tunisia.
Five imposing elders from the Ghbonton tribe appear on the screen. They teach Aymen how to play the tabla (a huge camel skin drum). The one-man orchestra then accompanies a female singer and local actresses with his various instruments.
The idea behind Musiques enfouies ("buried music") is to go and explore hidden places and share wonderful, undiscovered music. It is important to archive this oral heritage, summarises Aymen Goubaa.

Farah Souai, a trained pharmacist for whom everything must be square, is part of the same artists' collective as Aymen and worked with him on this project. His laugh is genuine and he has plenty of juicy anecdotes to tell around the fire about filming in Sidi Makhlouf: Aymen teaches me to adapt to the unexpected, to be creative. He is an excellent leader and is always there for team members.
Rhythmic, dynamic and funny, this first 15-minute episode, which is available on LaimanProd's YouTube channel, reflects the treasure hunter that Aymen has always been.

At the age of 8, when my parents gave me a toy piano, I started to rewrite the melodies of the cartoons I was watching.

80,000 followers on TikTok and Instagram

Aymen is a dreamer, a true artist! His inner child is still well and truly alive. When he was little, he would create a short piece of music or a theatre show with nothing but a glass or a spoon! remembers his mother, Souad Chandoul, fondly. The slightly unruly little angel with a head full of dream" confirms that: I have always been very inquisitive! When my father bought a computer, I hid so that I could keep an eye on him and the IT specialist who came to show him how to work this mysterious contraption. And, at the age of 8, when my parents gave me a toy piano, I started to rewrite the melodies of the cartoons I was watching.

Music and computers. Two intact passions and two research masters in musicology and IT network security. Currently affiliated with the Arts, Music, Heritage, Environment and Society university laboratory at the Higher Institute of Arts and Crafts of Gabes (Tunisia), Aymen boasts on his website that he has 80,000 followers on TikTok and Instagram: Social media is the easiest way to share my passion. I started making educational videos about music for a bit of a laugh, but I enjoyed the comments and questions from the viewers so much that I continued!


The first episode of Musiques enfouies – which was created as part of the Intajat Jadida project with support from FabLabchannel – ends with Aymen Goubaa speaking to camera and asking the viewers to contact him on social media if they can recommend any other cultural gems that they can discover together. I have my own ideas, but I'd like to see what people suggest. Involving as many people as possible makes this a more beautiful and magical experience. We will continue to explore!
To generously share more of these traditional treasures.