Category Archives: Music

Giveaway: Five Tickets To Watch The Amazing Yasmine Hamdan At O1NE Beirut On Sunday!

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Yasmine-HamdancJean-Baptiste-Millot Yasmine Hamdan – Source

Update: Winners of the Yasmine Hamdan tickets are:
Agnes Semaan
Amira Mourad

I will send you emails later on today on how to claim your tickets.

If you can feel the emotion, it’s for you. That’s what Yasmine Hamdan told Telegraph in one of her many interviews and she’s absolulty right. Her music is like nothing I’ve ever heard before as it mixes between traditional Arabic music and electro folk pop, add to that her wonderful voice and the playful use of various dialects of Arabic in her lyrics and you get music that is out of this world.

Who is Yasmine Hamdan?
Yasmine Hamdan is a Lebanese artist, singer and actress is now living in Paris. Hamdan spent her youth dodging wars between Beirut and Kuwait before she settled in Beirut, formed Soapkills with Zeid Hamdan, one of the first indie/electronic bands to appear in the Middle East and soon established herself as an underground icon throughout the Arab world. She was praised by the New York Times as “Arabic Music’s Modern Voice” (New York Times) and was described by NPR as “one of the most free-thinking and inventive artists singing in Arabic today”. Yasmine has been on stages all around the world, amongst them the Opera house in Australia, Olympia in France, Albert Hall in London, Haus Der Kulturen der Wel in Berlin, the Byblos Music Festival in Lebanon and she’s performing on Sunday 24th of May at O1NE Beirut: House of Entertainement.

yasmine

Who wants tickets to watch Yasmine Hamdan?

Yasmine’s concert is on Sunday at the exceptional O1NE Beirut and I have 5 tickets to give away. I will definitely be there with the winners and we might get the chance to meet Yasmine behind the scenes. All you need to win these tickets is answer the below questions:

1- How many albums did Yasmine produce with Soapkills?
2- Under which album is her song “Deny”?

I will draw 2 names (2 tickets each) by Wednesday night and announce the winners on Thursday morning. Another ticket will be given away on Facebook or Instagram so stay tuned. Tickets are available on Virgin TicketingBoxOffice for those interested.

Some of My Favorite Yasmine Hamdan songs:
1- Deny:
[YouTube]

2- Beirut:
[YouTube]

3- Yasmine Hamdan singing Mohammad Abdel Wahab
[YouTube]

Just to understand how complex Yasmine’s music is:

If it’s not really “world music”, it’s certainly not mainstream pop. “I don’t define my music geographically,” she says, “whether it’s Middle Eastern or international. If you can feel the emotion, the music’s for you.” While she feels proud of the changes wrought by the Arab Spring, she feels sceptical of the term itself. “Things happened and are happening very differently in Cairo, Tunis, Libya and Syria. The Arab world isn’t one reality.” Indeed, the fact that she lives in Paris, where she is married to Palestinian film director Elia Suleiman, suggests a degree of alienation from what is happening in the Middle East. “Islam itself is in a complex period. I learnt the Koran as a child. When I read the Koran or hear it read, the images and the poetry, the sound of the language is very inspiring. There are many positive values that come with a Muslim upbringing. But when religion becomes about rules and hierarchies, when it starts to feel like a prison, I’m not interested.”

NB: You need to put your proper email in the email field while commenting since winner will be contacted by email. You can only comment once, anyone caught commenting more than once will get disqualified.

#Achrafieh2020: I Want Every Sunday To Be Car-Free

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Every time Achrafieh 2020 organizes a car-free day, I get more convinced that Lebanon needs a car-free day at least once every month. On Sunday, thousands went down to Mar Mikhael to have fun, have a drink and grab a bite, walk their dogs, dance, play with their kids and enjoy the sun. More importantly, a wall of remembrance was placed in the middle of the street on the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide where people shared their thoughts and showed support.

I went down to Mar Mikhael around noon when things were still relatively calm, sat at Radio Beirut and enjoyed a couple of drinks with friends. Around 2, the streets were already packed and you could barely walk among the crowds. The atmosphere was amazing, the pubs and restaurants were packed, kids were having fun and there’s music everywhere you go. I walked around for a couple of hours checking out the different stands, tasting all kinds of foods specially the Armenian ones and greeting friends and random people I meet. I even shared a Nutella crepe with a Sukleen worker who was taking a break.

I’m not sure why I enjoyed this car-free day more than others, but the crowds were amazing, the streets were packed and the day was just perfect! I really believe we need more car-free days like this one and I hope every Sunday will become a car-free day in Beirut and everywhere else in Lebanon.

Here are some of the pictures I took and you can find plenty on Achrafieh 2020’s Facebook page.

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Hiba Tawaji Out Of The Voice France

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hiba

Hiba Tawaji was unfortunately unable to proceed to the final round and is leaving The Voice France in the semi finals just like Anthony Touma. Hiba lost after Mika gave her 23 vs 27 for her opponent and she couldn’t make up for that gap in the public vote. I went through the tweets and Facebook comments and everyone seems to be blaming Mika for not letting Hiba show her true potential. I wouldn’t know about that but I’m disappointed that she didn’t even make it to the finals.

In all cases, and as I said in my first post on The Voice France, Hiba didn’t need to go there because she’s very talented but the exposure she got from the show is quite amazing and will open new opportunities for her hopefully.

Update: here’s the video showing Hiba’s performance.

Lil Jon Is Too Scared To Come To Beirut

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o1ne

So Lil Jon was coming to O1NE Beirut yesterday and decided to cancel his show a couple of days before due to travel restrictions from the US government. Honestly, I’m not buying his excuse and I think that’s total B.S and unprofessional because these restrictions were issued back in August 2014, so his manager must have known about them before agreeing to fly to Beirut. Funnily enough, Lil Jon was at White Beirut back in August 2014 when the situation was deteriorating and we had suicide bombings a couple of months before.

On another note, I think the US Embassy should update their travel restrictions because Lebanon has been relatively safe for quite some time now, or at least be more specific like the UK Embassy is and advise against all travel to the southern Bekaa region of Lebanon along the border with Syria.

warning

In all cases, it’s his loss.

PS: Here’s a song min wa7e el mounessabé.

Haifa Wehbe “Breathing You In” Lyrics Revealed (MindBlown)

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Haifa

A friend of mine got really bored in traffic today and sent me the lyrics of Haifa Wehbe’s latest song “Breathing you in”. It’s basically 4 short meaningless lines and “just breathing you in” on repeat. To be honest, I think she should stick to Arabic but if that’s what her fans want then good for her. After all, Lebanese rapper Kiki C ain’t got nothing on her!

Lyrics aside, I wish someone could explain to me what the hell is happening in that video clip though. What’s with all these Interstellar and Gravity scenes? It reminded me a bit of an old Maya Diab video.

Love me now Love me past the end of time
Turn me up find my frequency
You breathe me in Take me as a I am
give me a sign show me that our love is one

Cause I’m just breathing you breathing you in
you get me started when you begin
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in in in in
just breathing you in

Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in
Breathing you in in in in

Loud and clear I hear you I feel no one when I’m with you
I feel closer when we are far with out weightless care-free love

Cause I’m just breathing you breathing you in
you get me started when you begin
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in in in in
just breathing you in

Cause I’m just breathing you breathing you in
you get me started when you begin
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in in in in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in
just breathing you in in in in in in in
just breathing you in

PS: I think he might have missed a couple of just breathing you ins but it’s ok.

[YouTube]

Hiba Tawaji Saved By The Public Votes One More Time!

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Hiba

Hiba is officially in the semi-finals of The Voice France after winning the public vote one more time. The next round will take place on April 18th and will feature the remaining 8 candidates:
– Camille Lellouche
– Anne Sila
– Battista Acquaviva
– Côme
– David Thibault
– Guilhem Valayé
– Lilian Renaud

I think Battista Acquaviva is the biggest threat to Hiba Tawaji as she has a truly impressive voice.

mika

Mika was impressed by Hiba’s performance but Jennifer wasn’t very convinced and wants Hiba to sing in Arabic like she did at the start of the show. Honestly, I think Hiba is playing it safe and leaving the best for last which is a smart strategy, plus I wouldn’t trust Jennifer specially after what she did with Anthony Touma.

Here is Hiba’s performance:

[YouTube]

Hiba Tawaji Won The Public Vote And Is Through To The Next Round!

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hiba

Update: There are still 12 candidates left out of which 4 will compete in the finals. I corrected the title from Semi-finals to the next round as there are 2 more rounds before the finals.

Hiba Tawaji is through to the quarter finals of The Voice France after she won the public vote with her last performance. The judges had no say in the final result so Hiba needed everyone’s support as she was competing with 3 other contestants from Mika’s team. She chose to perform Everytime by Britney Spears which I believe suited her better than Christina Aguilera’s “Fighter”.

Hiba is a step closer to the finals and I’m sure she can win this!

For those of you who couldn’t find the video and asked me to share it, Hiba is uploading all her performances on her YouTube channel and you can check them [there].

[YouTube]

Hiba Tawaji Sings Christina Aguilera’s “Fighter” & Advances To The Final Stages

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Hiba

Update (04/04/2015): Hiba Tawaji is still going strong in the Voice France and has advanced to the next round.

Hiba

Hiba Tawaji is one step closer to the Voice France finals after she passed the knockout rounds and advanced to the live shows, which are the final stages of the show. At this point, Hiba will be competing next week against 3 other candidates from the same team and performing live. I was looking for the video and it just got uploaded (Check starting Minute 2:30)

[YouTube]

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