Gabriel Yacoub was born in Paris, of a Lebanese father and a French mother. He was a guitarist and singer with the Alan Stivell group that toured France in 1971. Before he founded Malicorne, Gabriel and Marie Yacoub recorded Pierre de Grenoble (1973). Indeed this was originally intended to be the name of the group. It included contributions from Dan Ar Braz. With Malicorne, Gabriel played acoustic and electric guitar, mandolin, epinette de Vosges and banjo, while Marie played electric dulcimer, bouzouki and hurdy-gurdy. In 1978 Gabriel recorded a solo album called trad.arr, which featured English fiddler Barry Dransfield as guest.