Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Fares Karam and Melhem Zein Party In Dubai

Two Lebanese dudes walk into a concert hall in Dubai, thousands have fun as a result. Neither of them found in in his heart to sing in Beirut, a city that is mourning in the wake of the explosive bomb placed in a car. So they went to Dubai where the party is always on.

Faris Karam is the modern day father of Lebanese dance song, Melhem does that and ads a bit if soul into his act. They two stars shard the stage and entertained their fans who came in droves. Faris Karam is making his first appearance after his health scare. Melhem is making a big bash out of his latest album that was released six months ago.

The show must go on, and from the looks of it this was a concert where Lebanese and local folks form the jewel of Arab cities got together to celebrate the Eid.

فارس وملحم يتبادلان الأحضان ورابح وماجد يشعلان المسرح

Legendary Ladies Of Arabic Music, Shareefa Fadel

Shareefa Fadel is a diva from the 50s. This Egyptian songstress had an interesting upbringing. Her father was a well known Koran reader/reciter. She grew up singing religious songs before she joined a theater institute. She starred a number of movies in sixties, but in the seventies she lost a song in the war where she sang "The Mother of The Hero أم البطل" During the October war.

She had many hits and many of her songs have been  a staple of the Arabic music library. She produced to herself at one point and founded a Casino in the celebrated night life Al-Haram street. One of her most known songs is Harit Al Saqeen. She has been called Sultana o Tarab. Her fans and those who know her music can never miss her true emotions that she injects in her songs. She flirts too, but without being impolite.

Shareefa Fadel was among the first Egyptian performers to visit the new Kuwait and perform there. I have been hearing her song without knowing it was hers, I have heard the more recent version by now retired Rabih El Kholy who did an impressive cover of the song below.

شريفة فاضل - لما راح الصبر منو

The Desert Lounge" And Other Stereotypical Arabic Music

I thought about going to YouTube and typing "Arabic Music" to see what's the first video that comes up for that search. I have included it below, a video with 3,200,000 views. A mix of Arabic music that seems to be popular outside Arabia....Desert lounge, camels, the lute and there you have it.

The picture has the track list, nothing most Arabs would know. The music is the show, not the lyrics. Yes, they make certain sounds to remind you that you are not alone. But this is a really well put together album. And it seems to have sold thousands and thousands of copies at the Virgin  store.

I think the music sounds a bit like the older more classical Arabic music, but they tweak it so much, that the original composer might have a hard time recognizing it. I think fusion is good, it can come up with some good music that reaches out to broader audience. Not everyone in this county, would embrace Abdel Wahab music, but if you rework it just a little bit, it might become something that fits the Western taste.

To sum, CDs like "The Desert Lounge" are part of a place where we have two kinds of Arabic music, one we like and listen to as Arabs and another where we tell people we like this music.
Arabic Music "The Desert Lounge I°"

Pictures: Some Die, Some Party Like A Lebanese

The bomb went off few weeks ago, and it seems nothing going to stop the party in Beirut. why should they stop? Partying stimulate the economy, mourning does not. Look at these nice, young and good looking Lebanese party goers having the time of their lives, sipping champagne.

The above pictures were taken form a party with media personality Joe Maalouf who opens a new night club "Bouroiz" Joe was not alone, tons of his celebrity friends and entertainers turned out to party with him as the city mourns the death. I am sure the party goers want us to thank them for having a party and telling the world that Beirut is alive and well.

Guess what Beirut will always be a live and well, not because of parties and drinking, but we thank hard work and creativity.

The second set of pictures from another celebration for the first anniversary for an upscale restaurant Table 7, the brainchild of media personality Wissam Baridy and his brother Essam. Politicians, singers and actors were present to celebrate Table 7.


Lebanese Concerts Overseas And Debka Dance

No one is more passionate about dance and music as much those Lebanese. They know how to party--they also work hard. They go out for a good party, they fly singers all the way from home to be with them in Canada, Australia, Senegal, Venezuela or wherever they might have landed.

Lebanese are the perfect balanced folks, they are a very good representation of open minded Arabs who are passionate, hard workers and like to have themselves a good time surrounded by families and loved one. It's a regular news item when I read in one of those Lebanese blogs and music news sites, this singer or that songsters is flying to Canada for a concert organized by the Lebanese community.

Singers from home bring the latest songs and the coolest debke move all the way to the new world. There are many B list singers in Lebanon who fly overseas for concerts, the A list ones might ask too much and expect certain requirements to be met. The A list singers often go to the Gulf where there are thousand of Lebanese and other Arabs who like to attend their concerts.

The B list ones have done music videos, booked a number of concerts at home, and have a cool personality.    For 5 thousand dollars and an airplane ticket, you can get them to come and entertain your party drama free. And yes they will be good and you can talk about it and make your cousins jealous. I have seen a number of those concerts in California, Michigan, New Jersey and Atlantic City.

So there you have it, the good people of Lebanon do not care what you say, they dress they way they want, they make the best food and you have yourself a party. They are loud, proud and sweaty.

نقولا الأسطا البادي أظلم Nicolas El Osta ..

Pictures: Essam Karika Crashes His Jaguar

Egyptian bad boy of pop, the composer who never rests and the singer who is always up for a party Essam Karika has survived a car crash where his car suffered a total damage. While on his way to his home, a speeding car crashed into the entertainer's jaguar and wrecked the hell out of it.

Miraculously, the singer has survived the accident and doing well. I am sure someone will blame bad karma  envy or such mysterious forces.
Essam Karika - Sa'bah El Hayah / عصام كاريكا - صعبة الحياة

Video: Arab Celebrities Combating Negligible HIV/SIDA

I am not in denial, there are people living with HIV in the Middle East, we cannot all hide and pretend it does not exist. It does, but it's not a problem really. Not too many of us, Arabs live or know anyone who has it. Sure it happens to a lot of innocent people too. It's prevalent in places where they are open to other cultures---Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco whose immigrants and tourists go all over the world. Still in those countries, they really do not have many. 

Celebrities enter the picture and they make it all glamorous to have HIV/SIDA with sexy dancers, pop songs and the whole 9 years. I know Shatha Hassoun did a number in Morocco urging people to get tested. Now, comes another celebrity who has found a cause. It doe snot matter if the cause does not exist on a significant level--she just wants in.

Maya Diab, the Lebanese bombshell pop songstress and TV host had a fashion show, and dance  to spread awareness about HIV. They are on TV blaming healthy people for not being cool with the this diseases. They are talking about services. They want to stir up trouble to get funding from some group. I am all with giving medicine to those who needs it. The money should be used for services, not for a fashion show.

السيدا: قضية مايا دياب الجديدة

Video: The Pasha's Son حسن الرسام ابن الباشا 2012 النسخه الاصليه

The hottest pop singer in Iraq is none other than the hard working man Hassan Al Rasam, an Arab looking singer who chooses his models to be non-Arab looking. But this song of his is pretty cool. I like the dude and I like his style, I just do not see what they have to make it like porn. Cheap sex sells, but it sort of it does not matter anymore as people have been shocked enough times already.

His song is about a guy who has to have it his way every time, he is the song of riches, but in the music video we do not see sings of that, just a lot of ladies dancing around. This is an indoors filming, hardly shows a serious budget. This is a really good songs that shows the upside of doing Iraqi pop in places like Dubai

I am a fan of Hassan's and I appreciate his smile and his originality his sense of of fashion is hard to miss, but he is in the business because he can make catchy pop songs. In that sense he delivers, the music video does something, but fresh it is not.

 حسن الرسام ابن الباشا 2012 النسخه الاصليه

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Good Music From Jerusalem By Turab Basel Zayed

Basel Zayed is a Palestinian native to the holly land of Jerusalem, a land known for many things, music is not one of them. The young musician and vocalist found out our his true gift at his young age of 12. He took part of  number of local events. But then two years later he was studying the piano.

Then he began his career as a composer and singer in a number of local bands, among them "Sanabel” at Bir Zeit University, and the First Ramallah Group of Music. He, with the help of many other musicians, formed “Yalalan” for Arabic music and finally “Turab” musical group. “Turab” (“soil” in Arabic) is a group of young musicians from a variety of different backgrounds who share a passion for contemporary alternative music. The group plays Zayed’s original compositions.

I was dazzled by one of the tracks  Love Me, the guy knows how to make a good song. The moment I heard his voice, I said to myself, this guy ought to be Palestinian and then I was right. It's a good song where it reminded me of on song by Katehm Al Saher "Ahbyny Bila Oqadin" I like his style on the oud, the guy have had a lot of practice.

I am glad to have discovered this video, I am all about good music and fresh lyricism.

Turab - Love Me. حبيني - تراب

Hurricane Sandy vs. Crazy Outdoors People

It's easy for people to say, hunker down at home during the storm  I think it makes sense not to put oneself in danger. Being selfish never helps make anyone better off especially if you have to be rescued. I tried to stay home but I get sick of the indoors, I do not know what it is, but I cannot lock myself in. If I was able to do that, I would move back to Gaza and live in such a confined space. Glad, no cop was in the street urging us to go home. This is America, you can be stupid if you want too--not on planes though.

But I also understand people who want to get out and be in the outdoors. While I did not do any crazy stunts, I tried to walk around the block and it was no walk in the park. The wind blew my umbrella way, my glasses had so much rain water on them and on top of that it was really cold. But the good news 7/11 was open, so hot chocolate it was. I did also watch a lot of movies and comedies, they came in handy. I did also work on my music blog which was something I am always up for.

So, do not lock me in, I had to take a walk, glad to have run into two other people who were walking their dogs. Luckily, we did not lose power, it did flicker once and the street lost power for a second. I could not see us going to work on Monday, but Tuesday was the end of it at least here in the District.

WATCH This Cool Egyptian Music Odyssey

Dude with a guitar in downtown, a singing lady in the balcony a family man in upper Egypt's Nuba sings, fishermen in in the Suez canal areas and their instrument. People in the country side at a wedding, old ladies singing. Urban kids of the city of Alexandria riding the train and rapping about being together.

People in those little villages standing in a fair and spitting ballad verses about their history. Sha'abi music festival in a block party and dueling microphones. The unlimited Sinai desert and its residence with their unique history.

This amazing and gorgeous video is about being together as people share the same land and they must get along. This is an example of a business bring people together while promoting their own brand and making a profit while telling people to stick together.
 All songs are in the local dialects played using the regional simple musical instrument of choice for that region
   أغنية موبينيل دايما مع بعض-Mobinil Ramadan song 2012 HD

Carole, Elissa, Wael To Join The X Factor

While the contracts have not been signed yet, but that would not stop the press from talking about the latest celebrity panel to join a singing competition. It seems, at least three Lebanese pop stars will be sitting on the judge chair on the popular singing competition, Elissa, Wael Kfoury and Carole Samaha are rumored to have accepted the roles.

Meanwhile, it seems the need for an Egyptian judge is key, so Tamer Hosny has been locked in talks with the producers in the hope he would join the panel. Tamer Hosny has not giving his OK yet, the others have.

The X Factor airs on CBC, the casting and talent scouting will start in Jordan on November third, then the UAE on the sixth, Morocco on the twelve, Tunisia on the fifteen and then Egypt, the last stop on November 21.

Now, we have big Arab names on the panels of Arabs Got Talent, The Voice, Arab Idol and now The X Factor triples the dose of A listers.

Mohamed ft Shamia - Youm Wara Youm

The Arab Justin Bieber Has Finally Arrived

The moment I saw his picture, right away, I thought this is our Justin Bieber, I did not have to listen to hear his new debut single. This Egyptain young breakout star looks the part, the haircut, the outfit and the stare are all pointing to the Canadian pop star Bieber.

When I gave the song a listen  I figures it also sounds like a song Justin would sing, "I love you so much", "I am living for you", and such. Guys might be turned off by this song, but sure some young teens would find it of interest.

اغنية حسام شريف - عايزاني ولا لا

Michel Sajrawy's Perfect Union And The Arab-Jazz Merger

I am a sucker for Arabic music, I am a sucker for jazz. I am ceertinaly defenseless against the hybrid of Arabic music and jazz. Guitarist Michel Sajrawy knows both genres very well which equips him to oversee a perfect merger.

Michel makes the kind of music that can be enjoyed by those who do not like foreign music. Instead of putting Arabic music in the front, it comes up naturally in a song. Most people would cheer this creative way to adding a flavor but keeping the base and the guitar going. I know the kind of music he makes is popular in downtown Beirut and Amman, people are finding ways to bring two different musical notes together. Michel Sajrawy does it so well

“Suddenly I came up with a maqam-based solo, in the middle of a rock song,” Sajrawy recalls. “My musician friends were fighting me, shouting, ‘It’s maqam! You should play traditional rock!’ I have a unique way that makes me produce these sounds on ordinary guitar, with total freedom to play everything from maqamat to bebop lines.”

He is a Palestinian Christian and primer British conservatory education, Sajrawy finds that uniting disparate cultural and sonic worlds comes second nature. His approach is a little different than what you would expect. Instead of using a fretless guitar or adding additional quarter-tone frets, Sajrawy found he could express the maqamat modes, rich with evocative gradations in tone and tuning, on a regular old guitar. Additional frets, especially high on the neck, hamstrung him, and he found the sound of a fretless did not have the right feel.

"Arabop" A new album release, coming out on the 9th of October 2012

Michel Sajrawy & Band: Live In Geneva

Musicians: Michel Sajrawy – Composer, Arranger, Guitarist & Keyboards Programing, Electric BassAmiram Granot - SaxMaali Klar - Soprano SaxSamir Makhoul - Oud & VocalValeri Lipets – Contra BassWisam Arram - Darbuka & ShakersStas Zilberman - DrumsNehaya Damouni - ChantAdnan Haddad - Speech

It Seems That King Of Pop Amr Diab Likes Greed

Update: The Anti Rotana composers are now urging the Egyptian minister of Culture to look into the types of contracts Rotana asks Egyptian poets, and musicians to sign. Ayman Baghat Amar took issue with Rotana labeling Amr Diab Arab and not Egyptian.   

For Amr Diab, our difference with him are about compensation, but we see our difference with him to have "moral, national and materialistic significance." is how composer turned singer Amr Moustafa sees his disagreement with the pop star Amr Diab. Ayman Bahgat Amar is the lyricist who have led the attacks on Amr Diab and Rotana, Amr Moustafa joined forces with his colleagues in their taking issue with Amr Diab.

The way this disagreement started needs for one to understand how the music industry works. As explained by Amr Moustafa via his Facebook page,

Throughout our history with the pop star we license him or his production company the right to sing our music and lyrics  put them in his album, make ring tones and shoot music videos. In exchange we accept a fee and the rights to perform our own work and other mechanical rights as well. Amr Diab would make money from singing out songs at private functions and weddings--he is withing his rights. We would get compensated for public performance of our songs like at concerts and public events. This all changes when we worked on his soon to be released album, Amr Diab was trying to get us to sign the rights over to him which would not entitle us to any fees or the right to perform our own work in public--this way they are erased from our legacy. Amr Diab can then sell the rights over to Rotana and make more money. 

Now this makes more sense and we all have a full grip of the confrontation between the pop star and those talented and hard working musicians and lyrics who refuse to let others rob them of the fruit of their labor. This has more to do with business, and less to do with patriotism. Trying to change the contracts seems to be a bone headed move by Amr Diab, people love someone who embraces their action and owns up to their mistakes. To be clear, Amr Diab is not selling out, he loves his home, but for a moment it seemed that he loved his business a little bit more.

I think it's a great loss for Amr Diab, talents like those I have mentioned above are great and have tens of stars who would kill to work with them. This is a business of having many friends, few enemies and a lot of cash. It seems Amr Diab at the moment has only one of those on the list.

Soula with Amr Mostafa - Hossam Habib - Adel Haki - Fayrouz Arakan (3-5)

Monday, October 29, 2012

What Not To Love With Khaled Al Haber?!

Khaled Al Haber is a Lebanese singer, is an intellect and a musician. He has sharp observations about the Arab people and the leadership of their land which he turns into critical songs. Aside from that he has romantic songs. But the guy focuses on tackling issues of the day, while his hear beats Lebanese, he is a proud Arab and it shows in his song sections and music

Khaled Al Haber Is the Lebanese version of the iconic Egyptian musician Sheikh Imam who authored similar songs with Egypt in the zoom. Both of them like to make sarcastic songs about very dark and complicated subject. While Sheikh Imam picked a lute, Khaled picked his guitar and made songs starting from the days of the civil war till today.

He makes songs, and had a recent appearance in a packed Beirut concert. He is an activist a do gooder and a guy who likes to make much that challenges people by pleasing them.

khaled al haber asnam al arab خالد الهبر- اصنام العرب

سنديانة حمرا - خالد الهبر

Abu Dhabi Welcomes Tropfest With Carole Samaha Concert

Tropfest is the world's larges film festival for short films. It travels the world and stops in half a dozen world capitals. Their latest version was to go to Abu Dhabi and hold the festival there as part of the same global festivity. Since it's also the day of the Eid, part of the celebration including a concert with the popular Lebanese songstress Carole Samaha.

The concert lasted for an hour where thousands of people lined up to enjoy an evening of high caliber pop music with a global flavor. Carole is a hit-maker who has an impressive voice that she also uses to do light pop songs as well as opera like performances. 

Ramy Ayach's Earrings And His Foundation

For starter we salute the Lebanese pop star Ramy Ayach for his work with Ayach Childhood Foundation. He has put his heart unto this foundation and he supports it with resources.His latest is bring music teaching to the kids at his foundation. He has attended an event where those kids are performing live.

Ramy has talked about his charitable venture and adding music to the work of the foundation. Ramy has just been engaged and he is about to celebrate with a big wedding to a young Lebanese woman who has nothing to do with the music industry. Congratulation Ramy, you are a pop star who constantly improves himself, his music and his style.

But we have to tell you that you were wrong to wear an earring in your music video where you are paying homage to Kahil Jibran, the world famous literary figure. You cannot honor the man by alienating people. And no, if you did not want to wear them, no director will make you wear them against your well.

رامي عياش: خطيبتي لبنانية والزواج في الصيف المقبل

Rotana Silences Critics Of Its Business Model

It's a fact that Australian media mogul and Arab hater (Fox News and programming) Rupert Murdoch is one of the partners of Saudi production giant Rotana. Thus his stakes in the company entails that he owns some of the productions of Rotana including music, films and TV programs. He likes money and Rotana is a player in Arabic entertainment. The company has also brought us a lot of job throughout its 25 years in the business. Those are facts.

We star getting into opinions when we say he has a Jewish agenda and he favors Israel. He may favor those things and he might be part of a larger assault on Islam, but we really do not know for sure. Since a number of Egyptian composers and lyricists have expressed concerns over this relationship, and their rights going away from them to Rotana and its partner Rupert. Amr Diab's album started all the debate and talk. It seems that Amr Diab has lost the round and could not really defend himself against those charges.

Now comes in Rotana with its overpaid legal team, it took them two weeks to respond and now they are threatening those who make such charges. Per the variety news site Elaph, they are saying now those allegations are untrue and that those who continues to make those claims will be sued.  

"For 25 years and Rotana has been standing by the side of new talents and supporting those already famous  we help increase awareness of the Arabic culture around the world", "We have the biggest distributions operation due to our local and global partnerships"

They have also came to the defense of Amr Diab, recycling that such allegations are made by people who Amr did not want to work with in the first place. They maintain, that as a company, they own the rights to the Arab Archive and heritage of cinema and music, not a particular partner. Toward the end of their release, we will sue anyone who makes such allegations and insults to the company or one of its stars.  

All nice and dandy but Rotana has not denied those charges, they have not spoke about the nature of their partnership with Rupert Murdoch. He is a partner, which means he controls something. This is a business not some charity, so they are not in the business of preserving Arab culture because it's the right thing to do, they are in business of maximizing investors value.

Also keep on mind, half a dozen Egyptian singers have made the case that Rotana does not treat Egyptian stars well, they are in business to serve Gulf and Lebanon based singers, the Egyptian singers are in the backseat. The latest big Egyptian star to jump the Rotana ship is none other than the very capable and talented diva Sherine.

Do not take my word for it, please visit this Facebook group

احلا ما غنى كاظم الساهر اكرهها

Ahmed Fahmi And Arab Idol Go To Morocco

The second season of Arab Idol is scouting new talents all over the Arab world, while most new talents might have already been chosen, the show travels to half a dozen Arab countries to help drum up support and marketing for the show when is picks up again.

They have done their part in Cairo, now goes to the West of that in Morocco. Not sure what Ahmed Fahmy brings to the show, but he is a likable guy h can sing and can behave on camera. Ahmed Fahmy will be the hosting the second season. Ahmed has circulated pictures of his with some new talents he has scouted in Cairo casting.

It turns out that Fahmi is a huge fan of Ragheb Alama whom he wants to near that super star.

Arab Idol in Morocco - Ahmed fahmi

Tamer Hosny 2010 Out This December

You know the album, Tamer Hosny has been talking about for the past 12 months. Yes, the one where he speaks in English and does duets with the likes of Snoop Dogg and Shaggy, that one. Now, we know the album will come out in December 2012 in time for the New Year concerts.

Tamer Hosny has promised a good album. But I only stared believing him when he said he is going back to collaborate with the most creative force in Egyptian pop, his mentor Nasr Mahrous. Nasr knows how to pick winners. The new album will have 12 tracks where Nasr Mahrous will contribute two tracks. I think Tamer is more than capable of making good music, it's his attitude that kills the fun.

The last musical collaboration between those two was in 2008 and the album stood as Tamer Hosny's best albums to date.  Check out this odd promo, it may end up being something funny and fresh. Not looking forward to the English makeover of Tamer, but I am sure there will be other songs worth listening to over and over again in one's car as they drive past construction sites on the highway.

Tamer Hosny FT Snoop Dogg \ البرومى الرسمى لتامرحسنى وسنوب دوج

Video: When Asalah Nasr Was A Little Girl In Syria

Asalah Nasry starter her music career with the help of her own father who was a local legend in Syrian music where they keep the tradition of old school Arabic music alive. Syria does not seek to be the hip things in Arabic music like house music and such. Instead, they make old style Arabic music relevant again. They raise kids who appreciate the original and authentic flavors of oriental music

Along came Asalah who was raised in that school, she had the voice for it, and she seems to appreciate the music heart and soul. That's why she was embraced by the state TV, she was a favorite in official concerts and music festivals. She started early on and Syria has made her a house hold name.

Watch the clip for her from an appearance in the late 80s. Her voice has only gotten better, she takes no prisoners and holds nothing back....breathing seems to be optional. Those songs will never go out of style, there seems to be always the time for them. If you can sing like Asalah below, then you will ad your name to the legends of Arabic music. 

اصالة - يا ناسينا - 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hurricane Sandy Storms Egypt's Sluggish Pop Scene

Just walked down the streets of Washington, Dc where people are waiting for a hurricane with the name Sandy to hit the East coast. While the hurricane itself will not hit Arabia, another Sandy has taken the Arab world by storm. I am speaking about the popular pop star Sandy who is out with a new music video about the end of the world.

People out here went to the store to buy milk and food in preparation for the storm, so does Sandy who walks into a grocery store and reaches for the milk. Stay safe everyone, if you are like me trying to survive hurricane Sandy, maybe you can find time to check Sandy's fresh and breath taking music video.

Like Sandy's music video, the streets are empty, cars are abandoned,and no living soul seems to be out in the streets. While the world seems coming to an end out here on the American East Coast, Sandy's music video shows her surviving the end. The question is, will Arabia survive Sandy's pop hurricane?

Sandy - Ahsan Min Kitter / ساندى - أحسن من كتير

Lyricist Gamal Elkhouly
Composer : TAMER ALI
Arranger : Ahmed Ibrahim
Directed By : David Zennie

Soma, The Sincere Girl Next Door Songstress

At one point Soma worked with Egypt's smartest music producer Nasr Mahrous who over saw her impressive 2010 album (then her firs in 4 years). Soma is the girl next door, she loves someone she sticks by him. She is the loyal kind--just do not be a jerk. Her persona comes so even in her music videos. This all Egyptian songstress will be releasing a single in few weeks.

In few weeks Soma will be releasing a new single "Ma Feesh Ghiry", she has finished the song that was written by the legend Nasr Mahrous. I will be looking forward to this new single, I know the composer Amr Hashim won't disappoint.

Soma is a mother as of February 2012, she ave birth to her first little girl Miriam 

Soma - Da 7abiby سوما - ده حبيبي

Is This Bizarre Story About Najwa Karam True?

A number of Egyptian news/gossip sites are telling a bizarre story about Lebanese diva Najwa Karam. Karam who had a big concert in Melbourne, Australia was in the middle of her show when a concert goer, came and showered her with money. Like you would to a dancer and cheap singers.

It turns out it is a true story....we have a video that documents that moment. Money cannot buy Najwa, the legend.

The sits goes one to report, Najwa Karam got upset, stopped the singing and ask her guards to collect the money and give it back to the persons who have put them out there. Then she was reported to have said, "This is an insult to the poor people, you honor me by coming her and listening to my music, I came here to sing not collect money."

I do not know about this particular incident, but here is what I know:

  1. Najwa Karam is a proud entertainer whose dignity and reputation are important to her. Unlike many of her country men she has not sang in any dialect other than her own. D\honor, dignity are far more important to Najwa than money--otherwise, she would have sang in the Gulf dialect.
  2. Some Arabs (usually from villages and small towns) like to make it rain, and like to give out money in those events to show they are are well off. Most entertainers and venues collect such cash.   
نجوى كرم تلقم معجب لها درسا عند رميه الدولارات عليها

Najwa Karam - 2idak - La Cigale Hotel Doha 2012 Concert

2012 Egyptian Pop Album To Watch Out For

  1. Mai Kassab, the light pop princess turned actress is putting the final touches on her latest album set to be released on Eid-Al Adha. the album will have 12 tracks and she is almost done with each of them. I have liked Mai and liked what she was doing. Some of the collaborators on this album are the usual suspects, Ayman Bahjat Amar with lyrics, Ramy Gamal and Mohamed Yehia on the composition side. Tamim and Nader Hamdy on the musical arrangement. Other names are attached, but it seems this is a serious professional team that will make Mai's album the attention it deserves. Mai's last album was released six years ago, eternity in pop music. She makes spunky pop
  2. Haitham Shaker--old pal of Tamer Hosny. He was working on his album in London and got stabbed. He is producing his 14 tracks album on his own dime, hoping to revive his career and get back in the pop game. Mohamed Atef and Ameer Ta'eema wrote most of the songs, Ramy Gamal and Mohamed Yehia did most of the music work. Tamim, Toma and Nader Hamdy worked out the music arrangment.  
  3. Moroccan singer, and a darling in Egyptian pop is done with her album. She produced it and waiting for a good offer for the distribution. There are a lot of names in the lyrics and the music, people that seem to be new to the game. This might be good and might do the pop scene a big service. Jannat's last album came in 2009 and had 11 tracks. It was a very good album with an assortment of pop and romance songs.

I look forward to those tow albums for a number of reasons. One, the stars are hungry for a comeback. Two, they are investing their own money so they will give a top album. Three, the names behind the songs are seasoned. So, we will be surprised out of the many tracks each album featrues, some will have winners for sure.

Tamer Hosny Ft Haitham Shaker - Men Nazret Ain

Soula With Nabil Shoail - Arwa - Mai Kassab (5-5)

Mohammed Mounir Eid Concert News

One person at Mounir's concert shouted in Arabic, "Mounir, You Are The Real Deal", the king responded back, that that person is the big deal. The fans shouted the same thing throughout the concert that lasted one hour and a half where 15 songs were performed.

This was his third Eid Concert, 30 thousand people were in attendance. The popular singer has been in the business for 35 years and in the concert he chose songs that expresses those long years. In the concert he spoke about freedom  hope and what's to come in Egypt. He has also expressed his love for prophet Mohamed by performing a song he has made years ago.

People left the concert at midnight, tragic ending when at least one person have died in a car accident on the highway as they returned from a packed concert for the king of Egyptian song, Mohammed Mounir. Three others were injured in the accident when their car rolled on the speedway, the person who have passed away 20 years old. They were attended a Saturday night concert in El Ġardaqa. The concert was sponsored by the telecom company Vodafone.

محمد منير .. الدخله و حدوته مصريه .. حفل العين السخنه

Video: Youssra El Hawary Takes On The Streets في الشارع - يسرا الهواري

Youssra El Hawary is a street artists who seems to actually know the street well. To illustrate that, her latest single is titled "On The Streets" Youssra is commenting on the streets and what she sees around her town. Her style is the same surreal delivery about the odd things of life. You see selling stuff on the street including their bodies. Others sleep in the street whereas, others are being murdered in the same streets.

This clip reminds me that there are two kinds of street artists. The one that perform on the streets for quick change, and the second who make art about the streets without dissociating themselves with the streets. The lyrics for this track are the work of Amina Jahin, the music is the work of the performer Youssra herself. The melody does sound a little Greek to my ears.

I take comfort that a lot of Egyptians living around the world are tuning in to hear Youssra and other indie artists. Such fans like the humor, and the fresh take on music. I would have to agree that music does bring joy to the life of people.

Life indeed happens on those streets. Mission accomplished, Youssra Al Hawary.

On the Street - Youssra El Hawary في الشارع - يسرا الهواري

Saturday, October 27, 2012

VIDEO: Vintage Pop I miss By Rashid Al Majed

Before he was too cool for music video, before he was a big name and before he has decided to only sing and not make music videos, the Saudi Arabian singer Rashid Al Majed rocked the world of Arabic music videos and pop. He made it cool to listen and to dance to music from the Gulf, something usual for music that was distinct.

His last mainstream smashing hit was in 2012, all Arabs loved it and it was lampooned so many times. But after that he was no longer trying to be cool or using female models in his music videos. It's like he wanted to be a dignified singer among the pious of his country. He still makes music, some of them are really cool. But they tend to be heavier than your average pop. He sings poems and seems to keep way from the media. He has shifted into music production and has his own label. He is also a car collector.

Well, I am not ready to let go of this cool dude. Here are some of his under rated and some of his overlooked music videos he has made in his cool phase. He blended romance and pop without looking weak or pathetic. His melodies hold their own compared to what we hear now.  

 راشد الماجد - فيديو كليب حبيبي معايا - HD

 راشد الماجد - فيديو كليب يا ناسينا - HD

The Downfall Of Yara's Career

Yara came to stardom in 2005, she introduced herself as the sober voice that will sings decent songs and keep her clothes on. Unlike the many half baked voices in that year, Yara was a star with a warm voice, good looks and a conservative sense of style. She built a great career and earned millions of fans throughout the Arab world. She made great music and gave good interviews--she made sure to take her mom with her on all travels.

Then we read in Ramadan of this year, she was smoking in the daylight in Algeria--a Muslim country. She refused to put down the cigarette and got in an argument with the driver--the police got involved. not the end of the road, but smart. "Yara has disputed the story though"

Then we see a rebel movement among her fans, she had thousands of fans on Facebook and Twitter who love her and cheer her one. But most recently, they fans started to attack their idol. "She has not released on new song for us", "She is too busy selling stuff, endorsing good and doing private function" "We are leaving her group" "Most of her twitter followers are bought by her manger"

The fans seem to be upset for her lack of communication and the delays after another with her album. This cannot be a smart practice, engage your fans Yara and quit smoking, you are a classy lady. While your private and wedding concerts make money, they do not buy you a legacy like your fans can.

I still consider myself a fan, but Yara does not care about me, she is a bigger fan of money. However, I was told by someone who knows Yara, "She is a nice lady, it's all the work of her manger, he runs the show"

Yara - Sodfa / يارا - صدفة

DOWNLOAD: اغنية " ياوفاك " شذى حسون Shatha Hassoun - Official Music - Ya Wfak

Iraqi Moroccan songstress Shatha Hassoun ain't done with romantic Gulf songs, she wants to do more and her latest single speaks for that. If you have followed Shatha's career, you know she is restless, she cannot just relax and take a break. She is always in the spotlight. If it's not an ward, she has a new music video, a hot single out or a new solid album. And if all fails, she is caught in a feud with a peer.

In between Dubai and Beirut this talented singer works, sings and manages her business. Her newest single was released on the day of the Eid, with the title "Ya Wfak" on loyalty. A sweet track that comes from a sincere lady with overflowing emotions. Call is the sentimental song meant for the Gulf market and for those who appreciate such songs.

The music is the work of Jaber Al Kassir, who sounds to have outdone himself here. This is a welcome addition to Shatha's career who has shown that she is a magnet for good songs, she only sings what she feels. And we feel her every time she comes out with new material.

 اغنية " ياوفاك " شذى حسون Shatha Hassoun - Official Music - Ya Wfak

Reviewing Shady El Ghetany 2012 Album البوم شادي الغيطاني - تقريبا محبتهاش

Shady El Ghetany is a welcome addition to the Egyptian pop music scene  A guy who sounds sweet but also rocks hard. He released a new album, his first with a clever title of "I I Didn't Like Her Almost". Let's rock this record industry with artists like Shady who looks the part. The album comes in six tracks including one remix. He is musician by training who performs with his hard, mind and soul.

1- Tariban M7bthash, Rock music has now crashed unto Egypt, thanks to Shady who have figured a way to make this music a vehicle to deliver a romantic song. A happy song coming from a guy who looks the part. This is a story about a girl that 's in love with herself and not the guy.
2- Mish Di El7btha, a softer version of a really good pop song. Shady nails a bittersweet song about falling in love with someone who changes colors. A very Egyptian song about being good, but preserving your dignity. A good addition to a hot album.
3- la2et Wa7da, a happy song with Egyptian pop music written all over it. An upbeat song with a high energy and sweet lyrics about growing up and moving forward with the right person once found.
4- Alf zekra, a sobering track with great guitar work. This track is about the good memories that can save any serious relationship from going bust.
5- Awel ma 3neeky,  a pop song made for those who want to wake up together. A romantic song meant for women and guys who have never been with one. A sweet opportunity for Shady to show her softer side in style.
6-Tariban Riemax

Shady El Ghetany PROMO - برومو "تقريباً ما حبتهاش" شادي الغيطاني

WATCH: The New Egyptian Activist Anthem Live

Four different indie rock bands took on the stage to perform this epic song where activists are asked to stand tall and hold steady. Do not budge, democracy, dignity and freedom are so close. 050 Band members, Osama Al Hady, Ameer Eid and Zap Thrwat.

This performance was the moment when three different bands came together to immortalize this new anthem--do not give up. The artists have performed their own acts, and then they joined together for this popular song that promises freedom.

I think the performance could have benefited from some rehearsal, but it seemed to have gone well as the masses have loved it. I think the song preaches hope for the young people who thought change would be easy.

050 Band | اثبت مكانك أمير عيد زاب ثروت زيروخمسين

The Tunisian Farah Bin Rajab, A Media Darling

Farah Bin Rajab, the Arab TV personality darling is a hit in TV, she has worked on a half dozen of Network. Not only does she present, but she also works on themes for the network. Her opinions are often heard. Farah is well known for being a favorite among men, that's why she speaks she does not intend to give men a hard time.

I never knew she is Tunisian, I grew up watching her shows. She speaks Arabic, but a mix of Lebanese and Tunisian. It's cute. DMTV network is one of her homes, as this network is dedicated for men viewers. Really? Men should go find jobs, not watch TV and drink tea all day.

Can anyone tell my why is she a huge deal? Not hating, just trying to get an education.

فرح بن رجب لا أتعمد مشاكسة الرجل في برنامجي الجديد

Friday, October 26, 2012

Gold! Wael Jassar - Nehda Haba / وائل جسار - نهدى حبه

Wael Jassar is my man and he is making a comeback with a new single. I did not think his last single was wroth talking about. But this one, his latest is something that I like from Wael. This is a song that brings the best of romance singer. "Nehda Haba" is the newest single from Wael Jassar and he sounds at his best. It's in the Egyptian dialect released on the Eid to remind people who Wael Jassar is and what he is capable of doing.

It allows him to sing form the heart, as we are used to. In this song he is asking his love to clam down so that they are able to sort through things. This is an A Song  because it has been written by Ayman Bahjat Amar--the alpha song poet, and the music is from Waleed Saad, one of the most creative composers who know how to express romantic emotions like no one else can.

Wael Jassar - Nehda Haba / وائل جسار - نهدى حبه

The 70s Star Katkoot Al Amir Passes Away

He is no award winning artist. But he was a popular hit maker of the seventies and eighties, where he has starred in movies and singing in them folksy style that fits the slums. He had acted or appeared in at least nine movies and came in the Egypt's new policy of change under President Sadat. He was the Micro-bus star.

He was a night club star, beloved by many wealthy Arabs who brought their oil money to party in Egypt. He has a likable character and a happy voice made for parties and late night get together. He is credited to be the first link between the cinema industry and the poor people in the slums of Egypt and its mega cities.

He started as a drummer in a local band before he started signing. He had met Egypt's greatest composer Abdel Wahab who asked me to stop drumming and took it away to show off his own skills. Katkoot would sing simple words, the kind you hear in markets and the streets to bring joy into this world. He has passed away and survived by his family..

غزال الدرب الاحمر

Eid Mubarak Song From India's Dancing Muslim

India has millions of Muslims, they Indians of that country are among the most industries bunch out there. They are no different than the dance loving Indians, they got the moves and the swagger. Love the song and the dances, the comments are random  Some extremist Muslims do not like the dance and the missing of the genders. Bangladesh Muslims and Pakistan Muslims will appreciate this track in the local language.

I do like the dance moves, the outfits and the high energy. It's all about the family and friends 

Well, they are idiots, a good song is a good song. Eid is about having a great time, so those people can suck it. Enjoy the Eid everyone. Luckily, some people have put those angry comments to rest. I am very proud of Muslims around the world not getting worked up over silly matters.

"EID SONG" [HD] - Mubarak Eid Mubarak

♥♥♥♥♥Eid Mubarak 2012♥♥♥♥♥
♥Song: "Mubarak Eid Mubarak" [HD]
♥♥Flim: Tumko Na Bhool Paayenge 
♥♥♥Actors: Salman Khan, Shusmita...
♥♥♥♥ Eid Song....
♥♥♥Shahin Alam Sunny, Munshigonj, Bangladesh.♥♥♥

Layal Abboud 2012 Epic Comeback ليال عبود - يا أنا يا أنا

As far as pop music is concerned Layal Abboud is doing a lot of things right, the changing look,  the revealing clothes and the simple and happy lyrics. This southern Lebanese songstress has been in the pop rin since 2001 as music networks have exploded with good looking young ladies seeking fame, glory and some cash. Among them Lyal stands tall.

Lyala knows the Lebanese singing style heart to heart....she has masted the three singing styles of Lebanon "Debke, Mijana and 'Ataba" And her music videos have also shown her playful side. Her songs can bring people to the dance floor the moment she sings.  

Layla has a Masters degree in English literature, translation and art. She has released two albums and a third on the way. However, she makes singles and films music videos to be out there. But Layal is doing her part at home with volunteering for her country's army Public Relations and concerts for which they have awarded her with praises and awards.

I like the mixture of themes, old cars, vintage look and the old west. There are certainly more than a fair share of dazzling outfits, bright colors and dances. If you want new looks and over the top makeup, then watch this dance inducing music video. Good cinematography and art direction, good song and a happy beat. Will this be the song that brings Layal to the big league?  

Layal Abboud - Ya Ana Ya Ana / ليال عبود - يا أنا يا أنا

Rock Star Amr Moustafa Wishes Mubarak, A Happy Eid

He might be insane, he may be an idiot and he could be a political clown, but he is talented contemporary composer. Amr Moustafa thinks the world of former dictator Hosny Mubarak. He really likes his dictators and he is loyal to them. You know, he can have his opinions. He is free to love the man who most find nothing good about him to like.

But this Eid, Amr Moustafa on his face he wished the pharaoh of Egypt a happy Eid! Amr Moustafa has never shied away from the former president, he made him songs before and after he has left the government. Amr Moustafa did oppose the revolution and I feel he is using Mubarak as a card to cover up for his attacks on the protesters.

I think most people would get along if they did not talk politics or religion.  If Mubarak was a gift to Egypt, then history will tell us that. For all its worth, Happy Eid for all of you out there.

Amr Mostafa - Medly 2 [El-Daif Daifak - Interview] With Joumana Mourad