Friday, December 9, 2022
Thursday, December 1, 2022
Monday, November 14, 2022
|Watch video at https://youtu.be/kfQYPcwJnlk|
Watch video below or at https://youtu.be/kfQYPcwJnlk
Sunday, November 13, 2022
|Watch video at https://youtu.be/Q44-47WUxAE|
Tuesday, September 20, 2022
In their breathtaking winning performance in the finale, Mayyas brought together traditional belly-dancing techniques from the Arab world combined with influences from India.
Mayyas first excited AGT fans with an amazing audition in June 2022. Judge Sofia Vergara was so impressed that she gave the group her Golden Buzzer and sent them straight to the live shows. She remained the Mayyas's strongest supporter among the judges this season.
Saturday, August 27, 2022
You may already recognize Mo Amer for playing a sidekick on the Hulu hit series Ramy but you’re about to rediscover him as the star of his own Netflix series, Mo, which began streaming on Netflix (USA) on August 24, 2022.
Mo is a semi-autobiographical dramedy about a Palestinian refugee “laughing the pain away” as he tries to navigate life in Houston and the US immigration system.
Saturday, July 30, 2022
|Screening and Q&A on Sunday July 31 at 4:30 pm (Opera Cinema Plaza in SF)|
The critically acclaimed Lebanese film "1982" played in the bay area on Sunday July 31 at the Opera Plaza Cinema in San Francisco.
The film stars Lebanese superstar Nadine Labaki (Capernaum, Caramel) and Mohamad Dalli (in his acting debut) alongside an extraordinary ensemble cast of professional and non-professional actors (In Arabic and some English, with English Subtitles).
Watch Ramzi Salti's talk with Director Oualid MOuaness at https://youtu.be/Z7nEOT3i2ts
Thursday, July 7, 2022
|Ramy Adly's The Siege is now available on all platforms|
Ramy’s songs include the track Sahara, which takes us along the vast, warm desert, then to the waters of the shores in Alexandria, Egypt. Listen to this track below or at this link.
Adly has performed around the Middle East, Europe, and North America. He has composed music for theater and film, and gathered a large number of students around the world, via an innovative online curriculum he created, called School of Oud Online. His sensitive, robust playing has been heard from the Library at Alexandria to American cathedrals and schools. Now based in Washington, DC, Adly continues to expand the possibilities of his instrument. “I want to bring the oud to the same level as the guitar culturally, the instrument that’s everywhere and can do everything,” he exclaims.
For Adly, the oud has always been like a member of the family. Nearly everyone in his family played the oud when he was growing up in Cairo, including uncles, siblings, and his beloved grandfather, who gave him his first introduction to the complex, evocative instrument. “I grew up listening to the oud,” he recalls.
Listening is one thing, and mastering the instrument another. Adly plunged into his study of this age-old instrument at the Arab Oud House, with Iraqi oud virtuoso Naseer Shamma. Adly found himself practicing for a dozen hours a day, and loving it. "It was a lot like the system Paganini established for his students," Adly explains. “You have to go through the fire to be trained as a performer and composer. I graduated as both composer and soloist.”
Under Shamma’s direction, Adly played at major Cairo venues as part of small chamber groups and large orchestral ensembles. He performed at international oud conferences, book conventions, film festivals, and, notably, at the Library in Alexandria, where he became an Artist in Residence and gave numerous talks on the history of music (including one as part of a TEDx event at the Library).
Wednesday, July 6, 2022
|Yacoub Abu Ghosh's new podcast is now available on all online platforms|
Yacoub's new podcast (in Arabic) is called ليش أسمع [Why Should I Listen] and thus far includes 9 episodes that seek to highlight a slew of influential musicians/singers, ranging from Nancy Ajram to Michael Jackson, Each episode is eloquently presented by Yacoub who provides detailed info about each artist or genre. The Playlist for this podcast is available below or at this link.
In addition to his new podcast, Yacoub Abu Ghosh has released an new and exciting 2-part musical project titled اشتقنا للشام [We Miss Damascus] in which he brilliantly resurrects visual and musical pieces that so many will associate with the rich cultural heritage of Damascus and Syria. The first part features popular songs from Syria's golden age, rearranged by Yacoub and featuring female vocalist Salwa Jaradat. Watch below or at this link.
اشتقنا للشام ١ تتكون من ثلاث أغاني:- عالمايا عالمايا - من التراث الفراتي - محبوب قلبك - من تراث السويداء وجبل العرب - يا طيرة طيري يا حمامة - من تراث حلب الشهباء فكرة، إعادة توزيع وتنفيذ: يعقوب أبو غوش غناء: سلوى جرادات كلارينت: غسان أبو حلتم إي بيانو: يوسف مشربش مونتاج وإخراج الفيديو: أحمد زكي الجريري
In the second part, Yacoub is joined by Yazan Elrousan يزن الروسان in highlighting the music of the late Fouad Ghazi. The result is a brilliant 3-song tribute that will appeal to all generations. Listen below or at this link.
Tuesday, June 7, 2022
Sunday, June 5, 2022
|Lubna Azabal (left) and and Saleh Bakri in The Blue Caftan|
|Lubna Azabal (left) and and Saleh Bakri in The Blue Caftan|
Ayoub Messioui (left) Lubna Azabal and Saleh Bakri in The Blue Caftan
- The Blue Caftan (French title: Le bleu du caftan) is in Arabic with English or French subtitles.
- The film premiered this year in the 'Un Certain Regard' section at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival. The section name means "a certain glance" and it presents 20 films with unusual and non-traditional stories seeking international recognition
- Film is currently seeking U.S. distribution.
- Directed by Maryam Touzani. France/Morocco/Belgium/Denmark. 2022. 122 mins.
Sunday, May 15, 2022
"Hussam Ayloush has been [a] lifelong human rights and democracy activist for causes here and abroad. He took his current position as Executive Director of the Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) in 1998. Through his work at CAIR, Hussam engages elected officials, law enforcement, media, and the public to enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice. As an expert on American Muslim issues, Hussam regularly appears on local, national, and international media; and frequently speaks at schools, Islamic centers, churches, conferences, and universities." [Source: CAIR website]
Saturday, May 14, 2022
|Scene from Warsha, Directed by Dania Bdeir|
Everything about this film oozes with originality, from the theme to the cinematography to the acting to the soundtrack in which Umm Kuthum is remixed and resurrected in a subversive way.
|Scene from Warsha|
This is a courageous film that tackles issues related to gender, identity and the refugee crisis in a variety of unexpected ways.
Thursday, April 28, 2022
|Watch at https://youtu.be/sm4GU10T0E0|
Saturday, April 2, 2022
From as far back as the turn of the twentieth century, when Egypt was still under British occupation, women in Egypt have been utilizing music as a medium in order to speak out against injustice. This research examines the position of Arab women as composers from a historical and sociological perspective by providing content analysis of online magazine articles, newspaper articles and blogs in both English and Arabic. A literature review identifies a gap in the research, which is the lack of academic scholarship concerning individual Arab women composers and their accomplishments throughout history. Opportunities are identified for further research concerning the history of women in Arabic music over the past century. The article concludes with an argument that women in the Arab world have played a large role in shaping the history of music, and that contemporary Arab women composers continue to utilise music in order to create change.
MORE INFO ABOUT BOOK:
The Routledge Handbook of Women's Work in Music (1st Edition) was first published in 2021; Imprint Routledge; 9 pages; eBook ISBN9780429201080
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Dr. Zaina Shihabi is a researcher and IB Diploma Programme Coordinator currently teaching DP Theory of Knowledge and English Language & Literature at an IB World School in Malaysia. Her doctoral thesis (2019) was supervised by Dr. Laura Hamer (Music, The Open University) and Dr. Joseph Maslen (Education, Liverpool Hope University) and has been examined by Professor Pamela Burnard (Education, University of Cambridge) and Dr. Manuella Blackburn (Music, Keele University). Her current interests include researching learning theories and differentiated instruction. For more, see this link.
The Stanford Med MENA program aims to leverage Stanford Med’s expertise in health research, training, and education and apply them to the MENA region. They are building cross-cultural health research and implementation programming that informs policy. The program sends Stanford physicians and trainees to MENA for training, and brings MENA physicians and trainees to Stanford. The team is working to partner locally to enhance the efficiency of healthcare delivery in MENA. Stanford MENA Health is looking for advisors to join the board, and donors for their two programs.
If you are interested in supporting their mission of building sustainable and preventive healthcare systems in the MENA region, please go to https://menahealth.stanford.edu/
VISION: A predictive and preventive healthcare system that is driven by data and local talent to maintain wellness and serve the health needs of the MENA population.
Check out this interview Laila Soudi, Founder and Director Stanford Med | MENA Health Program (Courtesy of TechWadi)
What is the healthcare landscape in the region?
The healthcare landscape in MENA is full of potential—yet also fraught with inefficiencies. MENA regional governmental spending exceeds $50B yearly without directly measurable impact. Our region comprises >6% of the world’s population yet contributes only 1.5% of scientific papers yearly. We lose 1.5M+ lives early that could have been saved with appropriate data and response. We spend money on short-term, culturally inappropriate, and costly solutions from abroad versus building local capacity. With the right research, education, and training, we can save lives and build a more robust healthcare system to better serve all MENA populations.
Can you tell us more about your journey?
Originally from the Middle East, born to a Syrian father and a Palestinian mother, I started going to refugee camps at the age of 13 in Jordan. Then, it became clear to me that working to ensure better access to healthcare for all populations across Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region was precisely my mission. After graduating with an undergrad in Psychology/Neuroscience from UC Berkeley and an MSc in Global Health Sciences from UCSF, I joined Stanford University School of Medicine as a neuroscience researcher examining early onset mood disorders. I used this job as an opportunity to meet faculty members across the University and, a year later, met the Vice Chair of Psychiatry at Stanford Med who offered me an opportunity as the first ever global mental health researcher to examine stress and anxiety in MENA refugee populations. In this role, I traveled to 6+ countries and talked to thousands of refugees about their experiences as well as implemented 2 large scale public health programs.
During my time in Greece, at the height of the Syrian refugee crisis, I appealed to Stanford University President Marc Tessier-Lavigne to do more to support refugees. After a pitch meeting with the President’s Office, I was personally funded and appointed to lead the University’s response to the refugee crisis, where I built several programs across the University (from health to education and coding) that continue to help refugees. Less than one year ago, I returned to the President’s office and pitched a base for Stanford Medicine in the Middle East. My request was approved and supported by the University’s highest leadership, including the President and Dean of Medicine. This is now the Stanford Med | MENA Health Program with a goal to serve everyone—regardless of ethnicity—in the MENA region.
For more info please see https://menahealth.stanford.edu/
Special thanks to Zeena Khazendar, a student at Stanford and an associate with the Stanford Med | MENA Health Program, for sharing this info with us.
Tuesday, March 15, 2022
|El Far3i aka Tareq Abu Kwaik|
|Album cover artwork and design by Samer Saem Eldahr|
You can listen to the full album below or at this link in addition to streaming it on many platforms such as Anghami and Spotify.
According to El Far3i, this album marks the completion of a “10 year musical experience rooted in Amman and extends to the Levant and to Palestine’s diaspora, during a period where our issues haven’t changed, but in which we have witnessed major changes in the way we deal with those issues”. He adds, “the message remains unchanged, but the themes have become more diverse”.
● Nas Min Khashab: Track Overview
The themes of this third album range between love, philosophical and social issues, and critical and personal reflections. Some tracks try to get closer to the people, while others retreat back to the core of growing thought. The album was originally a ten track piece, but after El Far3i listened to the first full home recording, he felt that “Nas Min Khasab” was missing one last piece that wields some of his previous work with the final album— “Madineh Haditheh” and “Tadafoq Al Mukhattat” from his first acoustic album, and “Ya Sahbi” and “Estishraq Dakhily” from the second one. This last piece came to be the 11th track on the album, “Ya Nasi” or the “Extra Track” as he calls it.
Many of the songs on this album have been released along with elegant music video clips, such as “Mirtaha مرتاحة ” (which was written before “Tghayarti”) in which El Far3i addresses the state of people’s confusion as they settle for their current reality. Listen below or at this link.
With that, El Far3i’ concludes his trilogy with one clear message - “we are not alone”, as he adds to late musical giant Wadih El Safi’s famous sentence “Ala Allah Taoud”, a sense of responsibility on the people to work towards changing their current reality.
According to El Far3i, this album is a call to action for people to come together, despite their differences. It is also a confirmation that his inspiration for the first and second acoustic albums came from the people, a theme that resonated with him when approaching the third and final album of the trilogy, where he set out to tell a series of short stories about humankind in his voice.
The album’s visual journey compliments the sonic message by focusing on human stories. Accordingly, El Far3i preferred to appear minimally in most of the music videos whose concepts range from the social, the personal, all the way to the existential. He is currently preparing for an upcoming album launch tour that includes performances in Arab and international cities around the world in 2022. Check his website for details" https://elfar3i.com/
● The Journey of the 3 Albums (2012-2022)
The acoustic trilogy’s journey started off with El Far3i’s first acoustic album, “Soat Min Khashab”, an introduction to his project from his city, Amman, and branching outwards to engulf the rest of the Levantine region. The album was minimalistic in its production style and stripped down to him, an acoustic guitar with one missing string, and thoughts that are too hungry for contextualisation.
In that format, El Far3i found a new space, one that does not resemble any of his previous places as a rapper, percussionist, or as the co-founding member of “El Morabba3” at the time.
The songs of that album were written in the years leading up to the Arab Spring, and discussed the youth’s aspirations for that time. Songs that stood out from “Soat Min Khashab” included: “Dallik Malak”, “Madineh Haditheh”, “Tadafoq Al Mukhattat”, “Tab”, and “Sahib El Ra’i”, one that he still ends many of his live performances with. This album was launched alongside “Far3 El Madakhil”, a rap album.
The political situation escalated in the years that followed, and that was reflected in El Far3i’s rap album “Kaman Dafsheh” released in 2014. About that time, he says “we lost some hope, and we realized that the road to all the changes we called for is way longer than we thought”.
With that, Tareq felt it was the time for his second acoustic album, amid reflexive frustration. “El Rajol El Khashabi”, which was released in 2017, is “the voice of the guilty spokesperson, on behalf of the people”, according to El Far3i. Its most iconic tracks include: “Tghayarti”, “Fitna”, “Nossik”, “Estishraq Dakhily” and “Ya Sahbi”. To this day, Tareq still sees he second album of the trilogy as dark and mysterious, which is even evident in the album’s artwork.
As he was recording his second acoustic album, El Far3i came to realize there was more to be told. He felt he had compromised the hope he sang about in his first album, and the people’s interactions with the first and second albums left him with many observations and questions over the five years since 2017. The success of “Tghayarti” also that the issues he tackles echo the inner thoughts of his listeners. Eventually, these voices and his inner thoughts would morph into “Nas Min Khashab”, the final album of the acoustic trilogy, one so diverse in its themes and the issues yet close to the audience’s hearts. This comes after his latest rap/trap album, “Lazim Tisa” which was released in 2021.
After securing five albums under his belt, and a plethora of collaborations, particularly in the independent Arab rap scene, Tareq felt that a third acoustic album was needed to complete the stories told in his first and second albums that were released alongside three other rap albums. Remaining committed to the essence of “Nas Min Khashab”, Tareq opened up his previously very personal space in preparing for this album and welcomed the insights of those close to him like his manager Mohammad Kharousheh during creative brainstorming sessions.
The album was musically produced by Arab Drumz, and was recorded at London’s Soup Studios under the supervision of recording engineer, Simon Trought. Mixing, mastering and additional production was handled by Dave Scott from the Mix Room’s Hue Studios in Amman, Jordan. Tareq continues to affirm the duality of both the local and the international in his productions as he continues to launch his albums with the Jordanian record label, Immortal Entertainment.
The trilogy may be complete. But far from an end to the “wood” era, Tareq views this as the beginning of a new period of experimentation and musical projects for El Far3i’s project.
Nas Min Khashab - ناس من خشب
2. Lamma Tisfa - لمّا تصفى
3. El Qalb El Tani - القلب الثاني
4. Law Sarakhna - لو صرخنا
5. Madinet El Malahi - مدينة الملاهي
6. Tlat Arbaa - ثلاث أرباع
7. Ma Iyhoon - ما يهون
8. Mahmoom - مهموم
9. Thaghra - ثغرة
10. Ala Allah Taoud - على الله تعود
11. Ya Nasi - يا ناسي
Tuesday, January 25, 2022
|Logo by Tania Saleh|
Tania Saleh's "Tantune" Collective Project Presentation:
Tania Saleh's software knowledge:
Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe In Design, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Animate, Pencil 2D, Final Cut Pro (Visual arts) Garage Band, Logic Pro X, Muse Score (Music)
Tania Saleh's major international awards in advertising:
“Khede Kasra” - Women Empowerment Project | Leo Burnett Beirut
-Winner - Cannes Lions 2009 - Gold Lion
-Winner - New York Festival 2010 - Gold Medal & Bronze Medal
-Winner - UNDPI 2010 - Gold Medal
“Fake It All” - Brand Protection Group | Leo Burnett Beirut
-Winner - Cannes Lions 2011 - Silver Lion
-Winner - Dubai Lynx 2012 - 2 Gold Lynx awards
-Winner - Mena Cristal Awards 2012 - 1 Silver Crystal + 10 Crystals in other categories
-Winner - Epica Awards Slovenia 2011 - Bronze Trophy
-Winner - Golden Drum Awards Slovenia 2011 - 2 Silver Drums
Tania Saleh's detailed portfolio:
Wednesday, January 19, 2022
|Cover of Salah Stétié's "Seize paroles voilées"|
10th Anniversary of Dr. Ramzi Salti's Arabology Program Features All Episodes on Soundcloud + YouTube (Click here)
All 13 seasons of Dr. Ramzi Salti's Arabology podcasts are now available on Soundcloud, for a total of 101 episodes. Additionally, al...
Tamer Al-Ahmar displays some of his art in Amman, Jordan I first stumbled upon Tamer Al-Ahmar's art when I was in Jordan in the su...