it’s true that arabic pop has come a long way as have the “video clips” as music videos are known in the arab world. it still sucks though. who knows when we’ll get our clive davis’s, ahmet erteguns, chad hugos, timbalands, la reids, babyfaces, barry whites etc to recreate and reinvent the golden mid-century era of arab popular music that our parents grew up with?
i’ve been pondering the state of arabic music forever (i primarily blame this thoughtstream for the birth of mis / 9714) and although the primacy of the search has waned, it’s remained on constant low-energy ambient mode. i’m pretty certain we are going to see an explosion of arab creative energy in the coming years: the middle eastern equivalents of talvin singh, house, suphala, warp, hip-hop,  and punk.
my dot-joining-musical-journey through middle eastern music (and that definition has out of necessity been kept as broad as possible – dj/rupture is from boston, leila’s music has no real connection with middle eastern beats etc) has been touched and enriched by many including: leila, mutamassik, dj/rupture, rahim alhajj, gnawa, abstrakt collision, kamal musallam, fathy salama, sam shalabi, clotaire k, soap kills, reham, wust albalad, ilhan ersahin.
here’s a little imeem playlist (missing lots of great stuff as most of my music is in dubai) of good me music:
imeem rabeats


aside: interesting article on “Sampling Folklore: The re-popularization of Sufi inshad in Egyptian dance music” that touches on the kind of organic rootsy musical movements i’m expecting and hoping to see more of. (post videos are from the article by jennifer peterson – arab media & society)


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