Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sofia Marikh In Tahwak Takes Us to Mars

Anytime you see an Arab sin ger doing a bedroom/ bathroom scene, you know they either have little of substance to offer or that they are worried about losing their edge. Not sure where Sofia Marikh fits, but the past participant in the reality show Star Academy is back with a full music video

Sofia sounds a bit more grown up here and going with the classical Arabic for her latest tells you she is looking for a something unique. She does sound like she is on a journey of self exploration. She is not short on confidence you get that from the closeups all over this music video.

Filmed in Paris where Sofia speaks the language of that land and has sang in that language. This is a classy jazz/lounge song with bits of dazzling outfits here and there. Again, I like the music and the style of this song, a bit more dreamy for a guy. Still the footage on the roof of old Parisian buildings are captivating.

Sofia Marikh - Tahwak / صوفيا مريخ - تهواك

Lupe Fiasco Holds Nothing Back

Hear, see, say nothing is the best way to describe how the majority of this world look at death of people in the middle East and beyond. It takes rappers like Lupe Fiasco, one of the hottest rappers in the North America-and most informed one too to make this bold music video.

Lupe has never sols his soul to make a quick buck like many do and forget what rap is all about and start to sell sneakers, energy drinks and alcoholic beverages, furniture and all that stuff rappers now a days sell. The majority of us came to know him in his hit song Mohammad Talks song, but the mainstream came to know him by one of those hits of his.

In Words I Never Said leaves nothing out, he shows Gaza some love by talking about the Israeli bombardment of Gaza and Obama said nothing then--he still says nothing. Lupe takes on Glen Beck and his conspiracies theories. He comes to defend Islam and attack terrorists. Racism and alcoholism, pain killers, soda, actors turned activists and a dozen of other subjects. It's a provocative song and I think it's very bold.

I am glad Lupe Fiasco took on those matters becasue he is Mr. nice guy of Rap and he does have one of the best vocals in

Lupe Fiasco feat. Skylar Grey - Words I Never Said [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

Karim Abu Zaid "Let's Re-Build Egypt"

Kareem and Osama Alkhouly are two Egyptian geeky looking singers, they got together and made a track for the day after the revolution. Enough talk already, let's get moving an build something beautiful of this land.

They sound like two buddies with different vocals that went it to collaborate in this duet about Egypt. Kareem Abu Zaid had one solo album in 2008, it had 10 songs produced by Alem AlPhan, the mighty Egyptian music production house.

Many songs have been released for Egypt, they either glorify the revolution, or ask for peace. Few came out with an uplifting message about the future. This one might hit the right balance.
كريم ابو زيد - يلا نعمر بلدنا

Klaket Album: Music for Grownups

with 7 tracks-8 if you count the intro, the Klaket band is making their pet known, they rel;eased their album with 8 band members, it's hard to imagine a bigger band than Klaket. Larger than this would have to be called orchestra.

If you are into funk and retro music then this is the album you want to give a listen. there are great vocals, but most of all there are some powerful stories. Folksy stories that kind you will hear in country songs in Nashville. I did not expect much, but I was pleasantly surprised by how well written the songs are and how fresh the music of Klaket.

So go ahead and grab a cup of home brewed coffee, find a comfortable couch becasue you will not be leaving that couch till the album finishes. There are stories of the Tahrir Square and the revolution, but the album is largely apolitical and has a feel good.

They street sounds and the tales you are about to enjoy offer a rare experience in today's day in age. Toss that pop album away and grow up with the music of Klaket. I just cannot have enough of "Wad Ghatet", Helmo El Akhdar, and "Aam Hussein"

02.Wad Ghatet
03.Etnen Ayshen
04.Ben El Hayah Welmot
05.Nefsohom Mankonsh Wahed
06.Helmo El Akhdar
07.Aam Hussein
08.Kan Ya Makan

Klaket feat. Ahmed Yassin | كلاكيت وأحمد ياسين - مصري زمانها جايه

Turkish Singers "Borrow" Arabic Melody

So hotties of Turkish music Sinan Akçıl and Hande Yener are big fans of good music wherever this music is. On their most recent collaboration, a song released in mid April titled Atma, a cool hip pop song with some great vocals. Observes have noted that this song sounds like an Arabic song.

So it was. The Turkish artists liked the melody of Randa Hafez-Egyptian pop singer with an 2009 album "Mayalah", they contact it the composer and got the rights for his melody. Most people thought the song was stolen, but in fact it was not and the Turkish artists did the right thing.

Egyptian musician Hassan Al Shafi was the man behind this hit song and I bet he was glad to collaborate with artists outside Egypt. But the artist that sealed the deal is Mohammad Rafaei, the lyrics and owns the rights to the track.

Last I heard their is some legal battle between the producer of the song and the owner of the rights, who gets the money? As far as we can tell the Turkish artists done all the right things, but the Egyptian party seems to not know how to handle the issue of compensation.

Randa Hafez Gowaya Keter" / راندا حافظ -- جوايا كتير

Sinan Akçıl feat. Hande Yener ~ "Atma"

Tamer Aly is Just One Egyptain Dude

I loved the opener guitar for 10 seconds, then the house music hit in the face like someone has just punched me. For a song coming more than 2 months after the revolution have succeeded, it's not that worth it. What took Tamer so long?

If he did this song, he might have done it for himself only, not for the fans. the pictures are all over the place, so it would not have taken a long time to make. The song could have been recorded in five hours.

this song is for local consumption, it's all about Egypt which is fine, but we have about a million song like that. Tamer Aly has a good voice, but I am not feeling that he is using it in the right direction. There is saturation in songs for the revolution now, while the pride will never go out of style, the music often does.

Tamer Aly - Ana Wahed Masry / تامر على - أنا واحد مصرى

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Loai Ya Zamam Let the Old Times Roll

There was a time when I thought the young Egyptian singer Loai can do no wrong. Until I learned he recorded a song for the ruling part in Egypt. the song was used as propaganda during the fake 2010 election. So that makes the young singer guilty.

He has not sang about the revolution and has not said anything. but he just released a music video about telling the past glories to repeat themselves. The song takes a quick tour of the Egyptian history and the past. Nice try, by skipping the revolution of January 25th, he thinks he can change the topic, maybe he can.

It's a hopeful song for abetter tomorrow by the guy who has a very special voice. The song was released on a new TV network called Tahrir-in honor of the Tahrir Square where the action took place.

Loai Erga3 Ya Zamam كليب لؤى - ارجع يازمن

Nirvana Meets Haifa Wahbe

So I am a fan of the American grunge band Nirvana and their late front man Kurt Cobain. Haifa Wahebe might have never known who Nirvana is, but she goes well with their music videos. Someone in the world of the internet fixed her footage with some Nirvana music so we get the best of two worlds. May the great Kurt Cobain rest in peace now.

Nirvana "Come As You Are" by Kurt Cobain ~ new video

The Coolest Gulf Artist To Sing in Egyptain

While he is a household name in all corners of the Arab world, Hussain Jassmi came from the United Arab Emirates with a hit song in 2001 (Bawada'ak), Saying Goodbye. It was a touching emotional song about breakups and having to live with it even thought you still have some feelings.

Ever since and this singer has been taking the Arab listener to new territories and have been making some respectful music and mature music videos about real issues like mixed marriages, the Hijab and drug abuse.

But in 2007 he was the first Arab star from the Gulf to do a theme song for an Egyptian movie Alraheena "The hostage", the song was an instant hit and opened the Egyptian door wide open to this star. In 2009 came another song in Egyptian that was the song of the year and kept playing in the radio. The 6 O'clock song is that one I am speaking of about waiting for your loved one to show up on that date, and then you have to wait for eternity. This is a bittersweet song that gets stuck in your head for a while.

We have Waleed Saad, the hip Egyptian composer who put the music for this very catch tune and bringing us the best of Hussein Al Jasmy. Al Jasmy is busy between Dubai and Cairo working on his next album and various projects. Way to be the complete star who respects the taste of all his listeners and refuse to go for sexy.

حسين الجسمي - ستة الصبح

The Number One Arabic Spring Song

Yes, the Arab spring means revolutions and kicking dictators out the door, but that's just the year of 2011. Check this out Soad Hosny, the golden girl of Arabic cinema of the 70s and 80s performed this timeless spring song in an effort to convince some serious Arab man to take part of their spring break trip.

Love her energy, confidence and cheerful outlook to life. It's a tragedy that this princess had to leave this world, but at least every spring in Arabia we can still remember her and celebrate her legacy. Don't let the cheesy dance moves or the outdated customs turn you off, it's a good song.

This is from a 1974 film Ameerat Hoby Ana, the princess of my love. Handsome actor Hussin Fahmy co started. this is the movie that was produced one year after the Egyptian celebrated victory in the 1973 war. Poet Salah Gaheen wrote this lyrics and Kamal Al Tawil wrote the music.

اغنية الدنيا ربيع من فيلم اميرة حبي انا

الدنيا ربيع والجو بديع..
مافيناش كاني ومافيناش ماني..
كاني ماني إيه الدنيا ربيع..
فرفشة ماتأجلهاش للغد..

Medhat saleh la5bta Lakhbata مدحت صالح لخبطه

Medhat Saleh, the old dog of Egyptian pop is back with new tricks. Will this old dog and pioneer of Arabic music videos be able to learn new tricks. This is what his new music video is trying to answer. With Lakhbatah "Confusion", we know we got a cool title.

I always respect a singer who knows when to stop playing a model for his music video, Medhat has hired some people to act out the love story he is singing about. He is not himself falling in love himself. His song is for an upcoming movie Safari with Ahmad Bider.

The song is about live offering wisdom about those who chase dreams and end up with nothing. It's about loving what you have and holding on it. singing about greed is never going out of style.

Medhat saleh la5bta Lakhbata مدحت صالح لخبطه

Mohammad Mounir, the Loud Voice of Egypt

Before Mubarak he was the King and the voice of Egypt, now that Mubarak is gone, he is the true kind of post Mubarak Egypt and he is the louder voice of Egypt. It was announced that he will be appearing in concert in Dubai where for the first time in his life he will perform there, this time he will sing for the Egyptian revolution.

Few hours before Mubarak stepped down, Mohammad Mounir released his "Ezzay" Song, "how come? it was one of three songs to express the rage and the loyalty to Egypt. People everywhere caught wind of the song and played it. It was broadcasted on the internet when the State TV turned it down out of fear of its powerful message.

Watch this video from Mounir's concert in Al Ghardaqa of Egypt for Sham Al Naseem festivities in Egypt that mark the beginning of Spring/Easter and other happy Egyptian occasions. He is the Arab rocker that keeps giving us exciting music, it's hard to see Mounir going back to do love songs now, he is a hero for so many and his music continues to captivate.

The concert lasted one hour and a half, Mounir performed twenty songs for the 15 thousand screaming fans. the event was supposed to take place in Cairo, but due to security concerns the venue was moved.

محمد منير ازاى - نسيم الحرية بالغردقة 2011

Ramy Gamal's Malish Da3wa Be 7ad Is Out

So the youth of Egypt and the lovers of Arabic music as well as music exctives are all stoked about the release of Ramy Gamal's latest and first album. This album is testing the water in sales ever since Mubarak left office and no one has dared to release an album. Ramy was supposed to release his album months ago, but he kept postponing it and now it comes.

This young composer has decided to venture into singing, couple of singles later, a music video and a thousand press release later now comes the album, go purchase it please. Here is the track list and my review of them.

01.2odamy, this song is made for people who love to dance it up, it will make a DJ happy and someone who believes that love is dreamy. It feels like Amr Diab song.
02.Mafadsh Beya, the soft and sweet guitar make this song a winner, a darker song about everything that goes wrong in love. You play this song when you have been wronged. I like it
03.Mosh Kadab, a textbook pop song, a happy song about the inception of love and the very sweet days of early love. It plays like a conversation between someone who is excited about love
04.Nadely, a very tender sweet spirited song, Ramy opts for the lover inside him. He sounds good here as you can see some of his good attributes his vocals have to offer. The music sounds old though.
05.Hasal 5aer, another club mix to please the DJs of the Arab world and the 20 something young professionals who like to party.
06.fo2t Meta5r, he sounds a bit like Tamer Ashour in this track, which is to say he sounds really good in this dramatic song.
07.Ha5af Men Eih, I feel this is a filler song, Ramy just wanted one more song, so it was this song, I do not feel the lyrics. The music feels outdated like 2002 style.
08.Hatfr2 Eih, another breakup song about giving up on a relationship. I like how Ramy sounds here, like the voice you need when someone is about to deliver you bad news. Move on!
09.Y5lek Leya, some great music, and Ramy does well when telling the tale of his past relationship. His voice is made to do songs like this one. He puts some energy and emotion here
10.Etfadl Emshy, this sounds like an original song, I like it it does not lecture you.
11.Mosh Be Mazagak, a change for a happy song and a confession of someone who has fallen in love, it's a candid song that gives you warmth. I can see this song playing in movies and weddings
12.Getlak, slow is the way to go when you have a song titled "Your Mistake", you know it can be an angry subject. Instead this is a song by confused soul that has taken some beating.
13.Malish Da3wa Be Had, the title song has to be good! Fresh pop is how to describe this song, a very passive title, but an upbeat song overall. Honestly, this song could have been better

The Arab Dictator Stay-Hot List

To be an Arab tyrant these days is not easy. Watching protests calling for their removal can be hurtful to one’s feelings and sense of stability. Just last year, the people worshiped them. Throw in some foreign influences, drugs, terrorists and everything turns to hell! This can be quite traumatic for the poor despots who have worked to hard to advance their countries into the 1930s.

To stay in power, experts say, a leader has to stay hot. Once they’re no longer in, they’re out.

To stop from going crazy, you frightened dictators out there should stay busy staying HOT. Staying active, out there doing stuff, is key to avoiding insanity or a quick toppling. Do not be perceived as being aloof or just waiting. That is not cool. Plus, as they say, idle hands are the devil’s playground.

So here is what today’s Arab autocrat can do before and during protests to prevent the unpleasant revolution from being successful.

  1. Breath in/breath out. Remember, you are alive. They haven’t murdered you yet. The dead man walking look — a la Hosni Mubarak — is, pardon the pun, a nail in the coffin. So breath hard, breath deep, even if you’re on the phone with state media.
  2. Appear defiant and the man against all odds, even if you risk appearing out of touch. Everyone loves an underdog, even if that underdog jails dissidents, has a huge net worth and controls the country’s military. One way to do that is by pointing out in list fashion all the even more powerful foreign threats that want you out because of how awesome you are for the country. Work hard to push this line even if you and I both know it’s a load of shit.
  3. Issue a press release condemning Iran/ the Weather channel/ Saudi Arabia/ Al Qaeda/ Facebook/ the Crusaders/ the United States/ Canadian mounties/ Online gambling/ Al Jazeera/ the Jews/ Niqab-wearers. Mix and match, have fun with it. Keep bringing up new enemies of the state, it makes your regime look busy.
  4. Take a tour of some abandoned part of town filled with people on your payroll cheering you on because it’s freaking awesome and everyone always falls for it.
  5. Hire that Haifa Wahbe music video director to make you look good and youthful. Techno-Arabic-pop music is a must. Make a pick on who’s your favorite singer on Star Academy nominate , and ask people to vote for him/her
  6. Put your cash into gold faster than a Glenn Beck groupie. Make sure gold is somewhere else so that the people don’t get it. Cash you do not convert should be very well-hidden in your mansion. By the way, if your cash has your photo on it, save some because that is freaking awesome in other contexts.
  7. Get your presidential tailor to get you as many highly customized suits as possible. They could take everything but why take suits that only fit you! Plus you can demand keeping them in exchange for surrender.
  8. Re-shuffle the cabinet several times. Just take the Minister of the Interior have him switch with the Foreign Minister. Then abolish the Ministry of Silly Walks, only to rename it with the same Minister the following week. This is great busy work, can be re-done endlessly and vaguely resembles actual reform.
  9. Phone calls. Phone calls. Phone calls. Cell phones – NO. Ornate, official-looking land-line phones – YES. And get your picture taken making them, or else there was no damn point.
  10. Visit some other country or send a high-ranking official to show you are still in control. The risk is you get overthrown or your dignitary defects. But screw it, send the dignitary You can always kill the defectors family if he or she leaves. Hot means getting the last laugh.
  11. Demolish national monuments that protests take place at. It really looks like you’re doing something when you are not…. at all.
  12. Change your mind often. Offer reforms, take them away. Promise to resign one day, break it the next. Flip-flopping can be made to look like actual strategy. The fact it is not does not matter at all. It’s essentially saying, I’m way too hot to touch.
  13. Speeches. The more speeches the better. Do not make any that sound like your last though, such as a crazy meandering tirade, or at least one that is more crazy than your norm. That is very much NOT HOT.
  14. Do normal stuff at first. Walk around, sit in gaudy French furniture, giggle with other dudes in suits. Let the people see you absolutely have no sense of anything happening, so they think nothing is. Then when the coercion starts and everyone gets a sense something it happening, go bat shit nuts, over-state the threat, and sharpen repression.
  15. Practice your remorse face. When your forces kills protesters it is vital you look apologetic, actually sad, even as you deny any responsible whatsoever. Don’t think this tip matters? It could mean the difference between being Ben Ali or being Bashar.
  16. Play around with social media filtering and false flag operations. You have no plan, really, but you know social media revolutions are totally in this season. Do not look lost in the Arab Spring by missing the chance to molest Facebook somehow.
  17. Offer your useless endorsement of other equally embattled and doomed dictators. It will be super moving.

Remember despots, stay active or eat it hard.

[Tarboush Tip: Will]

Eskenderella: More Egyptain Indie Music

The music liked by intellectuals is often different than the music enjoyed by the masses and that's becasue of difference in interests and backgrounds. Here is the band Eskenderella, an indie band from Egypt that knows how to work the crowd and get them pumped up with some original music and provocative themes.

Using the Egyptian radio style music of the 50s and 60s in the style of Shikh Said Darweesh where story telling folksy style about bigger issues. In this song, they talk about stealing Palestine and its occupation, the American agenda and the Tahrir Square revolution, Arab nationalism, Tunisia, Syria, Libya and Egypt.

Enjoy some Easter Jazz and folklore tales. This is large band, unlike those five band members. Eskenderella, was formed in 2001 by a group of passionate Alexandrian musicians. Throughout their first year and half, they did a number of musical concerts in different cultural spots in Alexandria. The band stopped for a number of years, but came back in a new shape and more members in December 2005. They also added more songs of their own compositions and written by leading poets like Fouad Hadad, Naguib Shehab El Deen and young poet Ahmed Hadad among others.

Eskenderella - Yo7ka Anna إسكندريلا - يـُحكى أن

Nabil Rojeh Has The Hottest Arabic Rap

Here's the best rap about social issues in the Arab world, titled "The Arab Youth", I am happy to report that Nabil Rojeh has just released a very powerful and meaningful rap song. It's the first Arabic rap song that has no extra words that sounds cool, but contribute nothing to the song.

That's right, every word Nabil utters in this song is in the right place and better yet, it's needed and help make the singer's message. The song cover so many issues that face the Arab youth nowadays. Unemployment, education, marrying your cousin, killing your ambitions, getting life and work experience and dozens of other issues important to the youth.

Nabil sounds like Tupac in his most famous song Changes, they bring out similar themes and being at odds with society. The music is also creative and really upbeat, so that's something. The popular director David Zennie did a good job translating the song into a rad music video.

[HQ] نبيل روجيه - شاب عربي | Nabil Rojeh - Shab Arabi

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Rakan, the Arab Tarkan

So the people of Turkey have Tarkan, the Arabs in the Gulf have Rakan, this hip Saudi singer who has no limits to where he will take his talent and stylish looks in his music videos. One minute he is this good old clean cut boy from the Gulf, a shot later, he is this really hip looking dude.

Not to get started on the hair, as Rakan has some cool hair do! But he still takes it back to the roots with his use of old school Gulf musical instruments that makes it all exciting. As far as Rakan's voice, he sounds fresh and puts you at ease.

He does have a nice voice, while it can grow and get sharper, I think Rakan is the definition of hot pop in the Gulf. With that fancy smile of his and his eyes that indicate confidence the only place Rakan is going is up and beyond his home country. that's Rakan Khalid everyone.

Rakan - Weily weily video clip - راكان - ويلي ويلي فيديو كليب

Back To the Oldies With Warda

So what if the dancers suck and their moves are corny moving around like some kind of birds, but that does not stop us from enjoying this very classical song from the diva of Algeria who came to conquer the Arab world with her very soft voice that holds you hostage till the song is done with.

Wile Warda is still pretty much alive and working on a new album-her last move was making an appearance on star Academy, go back in time and enjoy this romantic song from the girl that cut out for dreams.

This song is back to class and good music where the voice not the outfit and the body of the entertainer was the star. This song is often picked by singers to cover and proof that have what it takes. I remember Elissa made a cover for this song and helped the young re discover Warda.

P.S. I am beginning to think in this music video Warda looks a lot like Katy Perry, one of the hottest pop singers at this moment. look carefully and see for yourself.

وردة الجزائرية / مالي وانا مالي . روائع بليغ حمدي

Gaza Like Never Before

When you are under siege for 5 years, there is little you can do, but not those women artists in Gaza who insist on having the right to live and create beautiful art in tough circumstances. Watch this clip of interviews from Russia Today covering an art exhibit in Gaza, done by a young Gaza who wants to show a different side of Gaza.

I am proud of those women artists and the spirit of Palestinians that is hard to break.

Art Exhibit in Gaza 2011

Monday, April 25, 2011

Speak Lebanese Arabic Video

It's obvious that most of my blog visitors are non Arabic speaking bunch. So here's a simplified video for learning Arabic on the go. Enjoy this under 4 minutes lesson with this good looking Arabic speaking Lebanese.

Learn basic greeting, introduced yourself, count, the days, and ask for help if needed. This is a very basic lesson that should get you started. It usually takes 6 months to can count yourself as someone who speaks Arabic, but it really takes years of practice and work to get to a level where you can make sense to any Arab.
بصباح الألف الثالث لمنصور الرحباني Carole Samahe Bisabah Al Alaf El Thalit

Carole's 2000 Debut Song

While Al Rahbay's were the masters behind this song, the true star is the back then new voice Carole Samahe that comer a long way to rule the world of Arabic entertainment in both singing and soon acting. Mansour Al rahaby wrote this gem and opened this music video with his reading of his own poem.

It was the year of 2000 and we were hopeful for a better world, but not really, it got worse. I have no idea who was the singer, but I knew this, I loved every bit of the song. The song is about justice and ending poverty. About being human and feeling for the other. This song is still relevant in today's realities and with the Arab revolution it's timely.

Loved the live orchestra, this is how you make good music not computers. I first listened to this song on a cassette tape I had brought with me from Gaza as I was coming to the United States to pursue my eduction. The song gave me some peace and hope for the future as I was uncertain about future.


How to Lip-Sync in Arabic

We all know that talk shows bring in musical guests and try to get them to perform on the show. Many do it all over the world, but it seems to me it's hard to see an Arab entertainer perform live on these talk shows. I mean in the United States, artists bring their own band with them and do a live show right there.

There is not much value anymore in lip syncing in this world, it gets old and it seems fake. It's worthy to mention that sometimes you can attribute that to technical reasons and budgets reasons. what talk show has a budget for a live band? So that's what you get with pop. Sometimes, the artist's voice is really horrible to, they chicken out.

A recent performance by one of a favorite singer of mine Mai Selim on the set on this upbeat and popular talk show. But Mai did her best with this song of hers that was a hit last year, she danced along and pretended to sing--just like they do in music videos.

Mai Selim - Far7et 3omry / مى سليم - فرحة عمرى

Asalah Goes on a Shopping Spree For Her Twins

Asalah is due any minute now to deliver twins, she goes shopping with her producer husband Tarik Al Arian in preparation for the arrival of the happy twins. Known for her sharp observations, not holding back anything and sense of humor Asalah goes to the mall and checks out the stuff she might needs.

Needless to say anything she likes, she had to order two of each. Never mind Syria is on fire, the babies need clothes and Asalah will give them just that. It does not hurt that some Camera guy in Arabia thought it would be worthy to cover the shopping spree. Yes, most people are struggling, but entertainers live in a different planet.

أصالة [ على شط بحر الهوى ] الحلقة الخامسة

Johny of Egypt Sings for the Fallen

Johny, is an Egyptian singer who was having a hard time spreading his music under the censorship of the Egyptian government under Mubarak. But since that thing is no longer a problem Johny who has two studio albums to his name has a new song titled Kameen "An Ambush"

In this song this young voice takes on the voice of one of the fallen victims of the Mubarak regime brutal tactics that killed so many people in the days of the revolution. The fallen voice comes to describe how those people who came to love their positions and power more than they care about the life of others.

One of Johny's songs released in 2010 titled Nakhliq Wattan, We create a homeland, the lyrics of the song sort of predicts the revolution of 2011 like other songs as well that stated the obvious people are unhappy
اغنية كمين على لسان أحد شهداء ثورة 25 يناير

They Both Brought Their A Game

what do you get when you put three of the best Egyptian talent in acting and poetry together in 1985? Sounds too random, but it's not so. Who comes first the women or the man? It took a top of of her class female writer to write something this beautiful. Sanaa Al beesy wrote the story.

Howa We Hyah (He and She), was a popular TV series in 1985 where Soad Hosny, Ahmad Zaky and port Salah Gaheen came together in this word. While those three are no longer with us, absent by death and mystery, one of their collaborations survives and continues to be one of inspire.

Ahmad Zaky brought the tough rugged man look who takes himself seriously and have a hard time letting his guard down. Soad Hosny brought the spunk and funk into this role, she is the energizer cuter bunny that made this show work. Poet Salah Jaheen brought his stark social observation and gift of words to describe the battle of the sexes.

The song does not resolve anything but it's the Arab version of Men are from Mars, women from Venus. It's a journey between tradition and modernity.

Howa Wa Heya سعاد حسني / هو و هي

Ziad Saleh, When in Doubt Bring out the Ladies

In all honest,y I love the opening scene, it opens like a well made horror flick and the birds in the moon and the hoot creepy the hell out of you. Then a caged cat woman shows in full gear and a number of guys show up for the show. Then the dudes get raped and the cat woman and her sidekicks emerge and detain the guys including Ziad Saleh who chose to sing for the eyes of cat women who revealed herself.

The music video plays like kinky bachelor party with some S&M elements apparent in the music video. A minute later, it's all party mode, dancers and all that jazz. This sounds like a Syrian shaabi style, a very muscular style of singing and they brought out scores of ladies.

Sure Ziad's voice sounds good on live concerts where he tours around Syria and beyond.

Ziad Saleh - Bano / زياد صالح - بانو

Sunday, April 24, 2011

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Egypt is Bigger, Better With All of You

The hard part of the Egyptian revolution is over, now people need to get the country back on track. That means showing up to work on time, being committed to perfecting your job and doing your little part to the best of your abilities. That's how you help bring Egypt back and help support the economy.

This is a public announcement featuring about 4 Egyptian celebrities (two of whom are Jordanian sisters)and half a dozen of the average everyday people who keep Egypt running. By cleaning the streets, making music, going to school and all those things they are supposed to be doing.

We are all Egypt is the campaign spear headed by the well groomed Egyptian actor Ezzat Abu El Ouf about how great the revolution is and how important it's to keep the legacy alive.

فى حملة (كــلنــا مـصــر)2011

Shadi Jamil The King of Halaby Music

Millions know Syrian legendary singer Sabah Fakhry who is the man who rules the world of Arabic Tarab music. This style of music that needs a solid voice, and ability to sing for minutes without being in need for a breath. Syria is the home of those rate talents, one of them is Shadi Jameel.

This old school singer of Halaby style of singing Al Qodod Al Habalbya in particular. This comes natural to Shadi who was born in city of Halab Syria in 1955. He has been singing professionally since 1983. He is in demand wherever the people of Syria live and they live all over the globe.

I came to know him as a little boy and for me he was the man with serious music and a big heart. I know of him becasue of this song that I felt was special (Tool Al Bonayh Al Yoom) I must admit that his music sounds better if you drink and smoke and I do neither so I have to enjoy it sober. Shadi Jamil is considered one of the living legends of Arabic music, the kind people love even if they do not speak the language because it's so different and offers tons of flavor, variety and poetry.

Still Syria is proud to be the home this iconic is a collection of his most famous performance.

شادي جميل -- كوكتيل حلبي

For the Crooks in Egypt

Again, the indie band makes waves again in Egypt by mocking the former Egyptian president, his sons and their regime. Taxi band goes after these guys by all tools, their lines are funny and true. Listening to the lyrics, I do not believe I am somewhere in Arabia.

This kind of songs is common here in the States, but still the people back home are not used to mocking someone for the past 30 years have been considered holy. I am not surprised than many are offended by the harsh and mockery of words used in those songs. Again, I think Taxi has a winner song and it's important to note that while we might not agree with each word in the song, but they have the right to write and perform those songs.

But, I gotta say, they guys in the band deliver the song as a stand up comedy routine and do it in such a humorous way.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Bertha Abi Rashed Wants to Entertain

Lebanese beaties are a dime a dozen, Lebanese ladies who can sing are many and hard to count. Meet one of the latest voices out of Lebanon. Bertha Abi Rashed, is the new pop sensation that might as well make it to become a celebrity beyond her music video.

Her new album is sort of creative, and introduces fresh and artsy concepts with various icons doves, watermelon and knives. I do like her green shoes, but got to say, I did not like her trying to expose herself with no need to do so. Look at it, she is showing you skin here and there when there is really no need for that in the music video. She just does not care to justify it, not a bit.

OK, I am fine with her voice, she has a strong one, and for the time being I am hoping it's not computers I am hearing, so I won't mind a live concert to see how Bertha really sounds like. I think she did well with the music video, but can she survive outside that world of 4 minute clips?

Bertha Abi Rashed - Ma Beykfiny Atlak / بيرثا أبي راشد - ما بيكفيني قتلك

Friday, April 22, 2011

Rest in Peace Salwa Katrib

Again Salwa passed away in 2009, and I am only scratching the surface of her musical legacy. She was the it girl of the 70s and the 80s, and not too many people outside Lebanon theater circles know this under rated singer. I place Salwa Katrib in the place of Fayrouz with the romantic chops of Elissa (Elissa has covered Salwa's old songs and so is Carole Samahe).

Here is one of her songs that I came across recently and boy, did it hit me the right place? I'am impressed with how strong her voice and soft at the same time. She really knew how to manipulate her voice to fit the song she is performing.

This song is about hope and never giving up or losing sight of what's important. The title is "Maybe Tomorrow" uncertainty. Whoever wrote the music is also a legend he took us from one place into another and leaving us wanting more because we will forget the night and its loneness nights away from the loved one.

سلوى القطريب يمكن بكرا salwa alKatrib Ymken Bukra

Hossam Habib Sings for Egypt's Squares

Hossam Habib is like a modern day pop prince in Egypt. He knows his roof and doesn't try to be something he is not. But as the son of Egypt he is, he had to voice one for Egypt and the revolution. His choice came a mellower song that offers some hope and widsome by talking about the dark days and the darkest hours in the Squares of Egypt. This one goes for Arab unity and the dreamers.

Hossam Habib - Aala Sout / حسام حبيب - أعلى صوت

Pan Arab Rap With Arabian Knightz

Arabian Knightz are well known rap band in the Arab world, they have collaborated with a number of A list singers on track and they bring their own style and fans to broader music. Now they are back with a new music video for Egypt about those tough times in the morning after.

They are calling for unity and asking people to look beyond sectarian interests. They want you to say it loud, you are an Egyptian before anything else. You stood hand in hand during the revolution now you can do that again.

While Egypt is in the center of this music video and the song, Libya is also there with their flags that overpower the Qaddafi flag. Gaza and Palestine are also present in this joint with the Gaza MC who has contributed to this track.

I did enjoy the clips and footage from the Egyptian streets once those demonstrations were called off. Back to normal will help bring some peace and prosperity to Egypt. I also thought the fact that the artists have earphones while they perform makes it a bit more real.


Another Lebanses Love Story by Rita Mitri

So Bassel Eid is a handsome middle aged singer. He is grown up and unlike the many voices he seems to be professional in a non-threatening way. In his music video he is going for the business man look, the man who travels the globe and sees many, but he still comes back to his loved one.

He gets coupled of points for the airplane landing scene. He is a sharp dresser, confident and upbeat about his love story. I like his watch and his style, but the music does not sound that creative, it's a very simple beat that has been used and abused for decades by the half baked Arab musicians working in pop.

Rita Mitri, a female music videos directed filmed him in this video, so you know you are getting a romantic fantasy of a love story, but it does not take you for a ride and toss silly concepts after another.

Bassel Eid - Alby Malak / باسل عيد - قلبي ملك

Amani Swissi Goes All In For Tunisia

Unfortunately, not too many Arab entertainers sang for Tunisia and its revolution, many seemed to skip it and go right in to sing for Egypt. Including Tunisian singers themselves, like Latifa, who sang for Egypt and its revolution an stayed mum on the Tunisian revolution.

But when you are Ameni Swissie, a singer from Tunisia and have a dreamy voice, you cannot help it but celebrate the Tunisian dream. they are your people after all and you live there, you grew up there, they made you who you are. that's a young singer the country must be proud of. It seems that many Tunisian singers have been written off like Hind Sabry who sort of was late to support the movement.

Now comes this song from Ameni from the homeland, with some pictures of the Tunisian revolution. The song itself plays like a theme song that plays right before a movie or a TV drama. Then you get to see the singer with a new look. There is more newspaper clips that talk up the people's movement.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Melhim Zain, the Manly Man with the Plan

Melhim Zein's father in law--the president of Yemen might be in a lot of trouble with his people, but Melhim seems knows just the thing that his fans love. Give them more of that manly voice and dress it up with that Lebanese drum beat.

While earlier hits from this Super Star contest contender were romantic and love oriented but that was 2004 and 2006. Now Melhim knows his style is the debka style music songs where he made it big in 2008 with 3alawah! Ever since Melhim has been working the same style and this song I included her is an attempt. Though he did a softer mellow song Kan Sidiqi, a story of his best friend married his girl.

But then he came back and did a beautiful song for his son in his birthday--Ali. Also Lebanese lyrics combing with the Lebanese beat to pump you up all the way to the dance floor.

Melhem Zein - Taj Rassi / ملحم زين - تاج راسي

Maya Diab Eben El Youzbashi

She was one of the 4 Cats, the Arab all girl pop band and now she is a fashion and media celebrity in Lebanon, the celebrated lady of style and music makes her first solo single and release it about five/six months from the time we first learned about it.

The song was filing in an old train station in Turkey when the director was struck by an electric shock and passed away on the spot. Yehya Saade was the director and Maya Diab was there where she was working with the late director on Eben El Youzbashi. Sad story and tragic for many.

So now comes the song, it's a funky pop song not short on humor and chick style lines and lyrics. It's in the easy Egyptian dialect, cute is the first word comes to mind to describe this single. Still we do not have a music video yet, but the song came out. There is a very obvious Egyptian flavor with some Turkish "Ottoman" influence, but I think Maya made a good choice with this sure to be a contender summer song in the fashion of Katy Perry.

مايا دياب-إبن اليوز باشي Maya Diab Eben El Youzbashi

What Do You Think of Leil's Voice?

I have absolutely no idea who this singer is. I do not know what to make of her single song for Egypt. I know this she is not from there--I think she might be from Morocco.

Anyhow here is her the good land song, speaking of Egypt. The lyrics are meaningful, simple but spread a good message about Egypt being safe and loved by its people and the visitors alike. What do you think? Write in the comment section

the video was filmed in a number of tourist attractions around Egypt to show the varying landscape and cultures of this land.

Leil "el ard el tayba"

The Dudes W Ramy Ayach @ Star Acedemy

About two weeks ago charismatic and eye candy boy toy Ramy Ayach made an appearance at the Star Academy season 8 where he performed three songs of his, two with the participants and one solo. Ayach debuted a new look, the George Michale-nerdy look if you may.

The song that all the ladies seems to want to see if his new hit song Afrah Feeky, but this time he performed with with two of the participants. Ahmad Ezzat and Mohammad Rafih. These guys made it look easy and it seemed that the three dudes on the stage had some chemistry.

Ramy Ayach will be heading to London for a concert to the many Arabs living their. Meryam Faris will be the other star sharing the stage for this concert on April 22, 2011. So the boys and the ladies got their favorite hot star to dance to their tunes.

"إفرح فيكي" من ستار أكاديمي Ramy Ayach

Nancy Sole Theme Song

News about Nancy Ajram, the favorite pop singer and the nicest one indeed will be voicing the theme song for the much anticipated Ramadan Drama Samara. Egypt treats Nancy like on of their own, she has always been there to Egypt and like many calls it home.

Nancy had in the past voiced one theme song for a TV show, that honor goes to Abn Al Arndaly, a 2009 TV series between comedy and drama. She really makes that one stand out with her spunky and fun spirited voice. I cannot imagine someone else performing that song, I bet it was written for her.

اسمع أغنية "ابن الأرندلي"

Sheik Mashary: The Most Popular Muslim Munshid

Performing songs/hymns with uplifting messages is not longer the job of good looking people with a good voice. There are increasingly high number of religious figures who perform songs. no one is more popular than Sheikh Mishari Rashid al-Afasy, the Saudi national who is a fixture of religious themed shows and music.

Sheikh Mashary has a large library of songs to his name and in Ramadan he is busy with various songs and TV shows. He does have a great voice and he has recited the holy Qur'an, it's only natural for him to use his voice for a good cause which performing songs with positive messages.

Not much literature is published about Sheik in English, but I know he is a BIG household name in the Arab and the Muslim world. He uses all tools to get his message out. Islam is in the 21 century. If it takes videos to get his message out so be it. Here is one of his many songs talking about good manners and the prophet of Islam.

سيد الاخلاق: مشاري راشد العفاسي Mishari Rashid al-Afasy

Helwa Ya Balady Awesome Remake

So everyone in Egypt and outside knows this song, it has been remade only a million time. this original song performed for the first time by Dalida, the daughter of Egypt and Italy. It's the unofficial anthem of Egypt, it's a worthy song that all Egyptians adore as it triggers load of emotions.

This time Jala, a young up and coming singer from Egypt made a good choice by covering this song and staying loyal to its roots and original emotional baggage. The way the music video was directed it really col and original the way they incorporated YouTube /Facebook/ flicker and other social media outlets.

Some wonderful images of the revolution are also there. I am sure the legendary musician Balegh Hamdi who put the original music would be happy with this cover. Not sure with Jala has plans for or what the future hold for her, but I know that this song of hers was a smart choice to standout.

Jala - Helwa Ya Balady / جالا - حلوة يا بلدى

For You Shadi By Fairouz

My best friend in college is Shady and one of the most touching and dramatic songs by the timeless Lebanese diva Fairouz has the title of Shady. The song still remains the only one in its kind to bring friendship, war and childhood into such a personalized way.

This is a song about growing up in Lebanese where unrest and wars took a heavy toll on the people of that land. This song picks no side, but rather shows you the tragedies of war when people are separated from each other and losing track of loved ones. This story is very common in Lebanon and Palestine.

so for you Shady, who I do not get to see as often as I would like goes this song by the first lady of Arabic music.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wael Kfoury US/Canada Tour Cancelled

Wael Kfoury was supposed to tour the US and Canada in the month of April/May 2011, but the tour has been called by by the concert promoter. It seems that the Lebanese romance singer had nothing to do the cancellation and he posted on his social media page that he was looking forward to the concert.

This is a shame since I know the fans were looking forward to see Wael in concert and enjoy his loverly style of songs that tell love stories. Wael has been dominating the charts and has been a big hits with the ladies and the guys alike, but he seems to have opted for singles than working on an album.

Last album released by Wael was in 2007, so he is also due for a new album this year, but it seems that production has been stalled. He remains the hottest Arab bachelor.

Wael Kfoury - وائل كفوري : شو مبكيكي

A Brief Video on Libya's History

It's OK not to know something and I am the first to confess, I know little about Libya's history beyond Omar Al Mukhtar and Qaddafi. There is so much history there in recorded and pre history Libya seemed like a pit stop for most historically significant events.

The Italians tried to subdue the country and they succeeded for a while, but the toll was high too high. The tribes and the city dwellers liberated their country and won their Independence in 1951 until Qaddafi came to the picture in 1969 ousted the King of Libya Idris.

The video is in Arabic, but there is English subtitle.

Libya in History - من تاريخ ليبيا