Hello, delicious reader(s),
I have been listening to a few indie Arabic language songs to improve my Aamiyah. I’m glad to write a post predominately formed of links, because my index finger still has prickly pear prickles in it from the fruit I picked in Iraq Burin yesterday. Here are six of
the best them.
Lafa Musallam and Jawwad Hibal (Syria, 2015)
The Girl I Love Is a Ba’athist was submitted to a contest called Syria Sings. It tells of a young couple separated by their differing political affiliations. Somehow lighthearted whilst incorporating the vocabulary of the civil war, I was moved by the stark difference between their physical backgrounds in the video.
Mashrou’ Leila (Lebanon)
I saw you going to the market in pyjamas, without makeup and your hair like a boy’s… sorry, sorry, I thought you were a guy. This song The Jacket Woman by the Lebanese megagroup appeals to me for obvious reasons. They also cover Daft Punk’s Get Lucky which is fun.
Youssra Hawari (Egypt)
Absurdly cute Youssra el Hawary recalls Amelie with her subversive song El Soor (The Wall), in which she taught me how to say “had a wee”. English subtitles.
I singled out this one for three reasons: she looks cool smoking a cigarette, the Arabic is simple, and the opening bars recalled Space’s Ballad of Tom Jones (1998) in which Cerys Matthews acknowledges Tom Jones as the reason she hasn’t killed her boyfriend.
Apo & The Apostles (Palestine)
I saw these chaps live at the Shepherds Beer Festival. They were super fun and I like the Swedish vibe of this song Hoppa Lele.
Dam (with Maysa Daw) (Palestine)
Dam are a hiphop and rap group, but this song’s chorus makes it sympathetic to non-rap fans. I saw them at the Palestine Alternative Music Festival and Maysa was a-Mays-ing. THE CAMERA WORK IN THIS VID IS SUPER COOL. English subtitles.
The prickly pear was tasty.