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Showing posts from June, 2013

May Nasr Records 'Ouhibouka' with Lyrics by Ghada Al Samman

Music Composition/Sung by: May Nasr Instrumental orchestration by: Lou Salloum Lyrics: Ghada Samman See lyrics in Arabic and in English translation below, followed by interview with May Nasr in which she discussed this new release. Here are the lyrics by Syrian writer/poet Ghada Al Samman in Arabic and in English translation: I love you.. Because you are only capable of loving yourself.. You make no effort to conceal this fact.. I have loved you for a thousand years.. Because, to this date, I am still incapable of truly knowing you.. I love you... For you are both my storm and freedom and my prison... I love you..for your beauty and creativity.... A divine poet...unworthy of trust... Finger tips of color and light...screaming out with the perfume of jasmine... I love you... For you are gypsy traveler... You embody pure poetry... Your inflamed body is a raging storm....! I love

Palestinian Contestant Wins This Year's 'Arab Idol'

Photograph: Anwar Amro/AFP/Getty Images 22-year-old Gazan singer Mohammed Assaf won the Arab Idol singing contest final held in Beirut on Saturday June 22 after distinguishing himself over the past several week's as a singer with a unique voice and a memorable stage presence.. After the victory Assaf was named by the UN as its first youth ambassador to Palestinian refugee camps in the territories and neighbouring countries. Here are some clips from his performances beginning with the song he sang upon his victory: Here is a clip of Mohammad Assaf along with other contestants singing excerpts from the the Arabic version of Les Misérables :

Rythms of the Desert: Berkeley Event on July 28

Rhythms of the Desert at Ashkenaz in Berkeley: A night of soulful rhythms & songs from North Africa, Israel, & Yemen featuring Dror Sinai, Eliyahu Sills & Bouchaib Abdelhadi.  With special opening set of songs of longing & love from Rachel Valfer (vocalist from The Qadim Ensemble) Sunday, July 28 Rhythms of the Desert Doors at 7:30 pm Show at 8:00 pm For more info see

Jordanian Artist Sadouf Salem: Painting Exhibition in Amman through July 7

Renowned Jordanian artist Sadouf Salem is holding an exhibition featuring 101 of her paintings at Zara Center/Wadi Saqra in Amman, Jordan throughout the month of Ramadan which began this week all over the world. Here are a couple of pictures showing Sadouf's art which is as diverse as it is poignant. For more info see Art Gallery of Sadouf Salem Original Paintings.  For any queries please contact or mobile: +962 79 5605008 Monet and Picasso:  Piece by Sadouf Salem Um Kulthum Portrait by Sadouf

The 40th Day: Film Based on Short Story by Dr. Ramzi Salti

The 40th Day:  Short film based on short story by R. Salti 'The 40th Day' is a short film (5 min) that is loosely based on one of my short stories titled titled 'Vivian and Her Son' which was originally published in my book The Native Informant and Other Stories . The film/story is about a Middle Eastern mother who is forced to deal with the death of her son by coming to terms with their relationship and by reflecting on the things she might have done differently. I applaud the director/producers/writers etc for their ability to broach so many social issues that often remain undiscussed in many Arab-American and/or Middle Eastern communities, even in the diaspora. Also kudos to the actors--especially main actress Nina Nayebi for her amazing portrayal of the mother in the film. For more info about the film (IMDB) click  HERE To read 'Vivian and Her Son' (by Ramzi Salti) upon which this film was based, click  HERE For film screenings and more see Asi

Two Arabic Versions of 'Les Miserables' Musical in Arabic

 Egyptian version of Les Miserables by Fabrika music ensemble The world famous Les Miserables musical, which has been translated from the original French soundtrack and sung into many languages, is now making its way into the Arab world via two different versions--both in Arabic--from Egypt (in Egyptian dialect) to Lebanon (Levantine dialect). This moving performance from the Egyptian version of the famous musical  Les Misérables  was recently broadcast during Egyptian TV talk show host Bassem Youssef 's 'Al Bernameg' (Egypt's John Stewert).  It was performed by the Egyptian ensemble Fabrika فبريكا  and was especially poignant because there was a demo outside the studio in support of the fine arts including ballet which Morsi's government (before being overturned) was threatening to ban. Watch the performance below with Arabic captions which you can follow: A few weeks later, the popular Arab Idol show sh

Season Finale of Arabology (aired June 13) Available

The 4-hour season finale of DJ Ramzi's Arabology aired on Thurs June 13, 2013 and featured music by some of the Arab world's best alternative musicians/artists, along with commentary (in English) by DJ Ramzi.  Includes interview with Director Rami Musa Alayan (who discussed his film Private Sun ) as well as with the film's soundtrack composer Frank Gelat. Listen below or download complete show at arabology · Arabology 5.10 [Best of Alternative Arabic Music + Rami Musa Alayan Interview] PART ONE ft music by Joussour, Michel Sajrawy, Mike Massy, Tania Saleh, Egyptian Projet, Rim Banna, Dal'ouna, Ramzi Aburadwan, Omar Offendum, La Tlateh, Hiba, DAM, Macel Khalife (ft Mahmoud Darwish) PART TWO ft Pangia, Mashrou' Leila, Donia Masoud, Maryam (ft Zeid Hamdan), Rasha, JadaL, Toot Ard, Aziz Maraka, Tamer Abu Ghazaleh. PART THREE ft Emel Mathlouthi, Eliyahu Sills, Yassir Chadly, Joubran Trio, Elizabeth Ayoub, Charbel Rouhana, R

Opportunities at 'Think Unlimited' (Jordan)

For more info: Are you committed to helping improve education in Jordan? Do you want to provide a transformative learning experience for young people? Did the events of the Arab Awakening inspire you to take action? If so, then Think Unlimited has just the opportunity for you! Think Unlimited is looking to hire eight (8) outstanding youth of Arab descent to work in pairs as Mindset Mentors and help us launch our newest education program, Mindset Matters, for Jordanian university students. Mindset Mentors will facilitate and lead a semester-long course on mindset and motivation, build strong, meaningful relationships with program participants, and give us important feedback on on the curriculum. We are looking for applicants of Arab heritage, who are fluent in both Arabic and English, and who can commit to living and working in Jordan from September to December 2013. For more information, a full description of the position, and application materi

6/6 Arabology Podcast Spotlights Yasmine Hamdan

Download: The first 90 min of the June 6, 2013 Arabology podcast feature a musical interview with Lebanese born singer/songwriter/actress Yasmine Hamdan who has redefined alternative Arabic music as part of Soapkills (with Zeid Hamdan) before working with Mirwais as YAS on the 'Arabology' album and eventually launching a solo career of her own. (Listen at or click on arrow below or download entire podcast at ) The second part of this podcast (30 min) includes songs by Oumeima El Khalil, The Egyptian Project, Pangia, Rima Khcheich, El Far3i, El Ras. (Listen/download at ) Listen at

May 30 Arabology Podcast Spotlights Mashrou' Leila

The May 30 episode of 'Arabology' (Season 5 Episode 8) highlights the music and career of Lebanese music band Mashrou' Leila whose music style and socially conscious lyrics have reshaped the alternative music scene in the Arab world. Show includes pre-recorded interviews with band members Hamed Sinno and Omaya Malaeb, various songs by the group and commentary by DJ Ramzi. Listen to full episode below or at this link . arabology · Arabology 5.8 [Mashrou' Leila ft Interviews & Rare Tracks]