Musically Defined

If you were to select a song to represent the human being that you are; which song would you feel most does you justice?

Advertisements

Jan 25 Told In Song

I’ve FBed it, tweeted it and blasted it in my own car stereo and those of friends. Only thing remaining is blogging it, so here it is, lyrics and all 🙂

غنائية يوم ما الشعب إتغير

غناء فاطمة سعيد
موسيقى مصطفى الحلوانى
كلمات مصطفي أبوجمرة

كنا بنشوف الطريق مفيهوش طريق
و السما فوقنا رصاصى والامل ميت غريق
كنا فاقدين الهوية والحياة زي الممات
كنا ساكتين كلنا جوا السكات
كنا و كان و ده زمان

و في صبح اخضر ملوش مثيل
لما التقينا فى ميدانها الأسمر الاصيل
لما اتفاجئنا اننا بنحب بعض
و نموت لبعض
يومها الهلال حضن الصليب
يوم ما اشتعل فينا اللهيب
و كان اللى كان

يومها ألشعب اتغير
فك لسانه و اصبح سيد
يومها خرجنا نقول مش نافع
إحنا الشعب المصرى و صوتنا الطالع

يومها انطلقت ثورة فى مصر
ثورة تحرر ثورة تقرر ثورة تعيد ترتيب القصر
شعبنا واقف يرفض يسقط يطرد

قطعوا جميع الاتصالات
غموا عيون الفضائيات
حطوا السم فى قلب الزاد
يومها العالم صلى و شافنا
بنقبض علي دبحنا و علي سرقنا
و علي كدب فى بيان القصر
ثورة ثورة حتى النصر
ثورة فى كل شوارع مصر

بدم ولادها النازف اخضر
عزم شبابها الوقف صامد واحد راصد ماجد حالف
حالف لازم ينقذ مصر

و يومها العالم سقف واقف
والنيل زغرد عارف
ان خلاص الديب استسلم
وان الشرفا و روح الشهدا
حيملوا القصر
تحيا مصر

Song & Dance

Most of you already know where I stand on Fairuz, I am absolutely fanatic, I would hear her singing the yellow pages. I would hear her tunes all day every day. Hearing her sing live was highlight of the century. So you can imagine my excitement at the prospect of a new album. Yet truth of the matter is, now that the album is out. I actually hate it.

I found his remix of El Bent El Challabeya ridiculous. Melodies to most of the songs were boring. Her voice isn’t what it used to be. I didn’t fall in love with the lyrics of any one particular song. Please spare me the argument that I didn’t give it a chance and that I must hear it a few times for it to grow on me. This very argument is the reason Arabic music is going down the drain. If you have to get used to it to like it then it probably wasn’t that good to start with. Great music, is music you fall in love with instantaneously, first run through. Think back to how you reacted to her earlier albums/songs, how the Rahbani music swept you away, how the lyrics touched you, how her voice miraculously made the world good again.

My adorable Mom upon hearing the album commented that it felt that the music and lyrics were written and composed with the 4 Cats in mind rather than Fairouz. Woman makes a valid comparison. Will leave you with the only song on the album I could half stomach.

Santana has a new album out. A Santana take on rock classics. Like most cover albums it carries the promise of greatness as well as the premise of crashing and burning. I love who he’s chosen to collaborate with. The Rob Thomas and Daughtry covers were brilliant. I hated his rendition of Smoke on the Water, was an odd choice for his musical style to start with. On the other hand, his version of the Beatles classic “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” is probably some of the best music I’ve heard in ages. BRILLIANT! Here you go, you’ll hardly recognise the song.

If you are into the local music scene I have a recommendation for you. Some local boys play some really good rock and alternative. Check them out here. Band is called Digla and their CD is available next to check out at Diwan. Totally worth the buy. You can listen to some of their tracks on their website to see if they are your style.

Finally, as a special dedication, the ides of March, just for you. Enjoy.

 

On Childhood Dreams

Growing up, my lovely Mother had me and my sister enrolled in all the activities she believed it was important for a lady of stature in society to be able to do. She had such a cute Jane Austen take on things, so for the longest time it was piano, swimming and tennis lessons. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all the better for those classes. I love music dearly and value my piano and the classics greatly. It is just, ever since I’ve been a teen, I’ve always wanted to learn the guitar. Guitar solos in my favourite songs would drive me mad. Yet as I grew older there was always something else that had to be learned, so there was no time for fresh hobbies, let alone fresh hobbies my mom saw as unlady-like.

Anyway, having the MBA out of the way and having given up on the CFA (best of luck to all those sitting in a week); it was time to finally learn the guitar. Fate had thrown my way some accomplished guitarists with intricate knowledge of the instrument itself. I window shopped for a guitar for the entire length of my 3 months in Dubai. Almost bought a Hofner on my last weekend there. I had borrowed a friend’s guitar and had tortured the poor thing long enough to decide that I was serious about this and that I wanted one to call my own.

Being back in Cairo, buying a guitar is a whole new story. Guitar experts will tell you that this is not a purchase decision you want to make on your own. There are countless things to check for and you have to know how to kick the tires. So after several attempts to meet guitar playing friends, and after having been blown off a couple of times for no inexplicable reason, Bassem comes to the rescue.

*Not sure how he feels about me using his name in public so will stick to his first name*.

We go to this store in Maadi, he gives the sales guy our price range, brings down all the classical guitars within that price range (one of them being a bloody FENDER!!) and gets to it. He plays every single note on every single fret on every single guitar. He does scales up and down them. Plays freestyle, some flamenco and a song to boot. Knocks on the wood at different locations. Checks its balance. Scrutinises every bit of those guitars, before coming to the glorious conclusion of:

“Take this one, its a decent guitar!”

Hence ladies and gents, voila, my very own guitar.

May you all get to realise your childhood dreams.

The Art of Improvising

Yeah yeah, I know how late this is, my To Do list is evolving into a joke, yet not crossing things off it irks me, so here you go, my belated take on the notorious Cairo Jazz Festival.

So a month prior to the concert, minimal details have been announced and getting a ticket is a challenge that involves seeking the help of lovely individuals such as the delightful queen of the pink planet (in my case). Thanks ya fandem for the tickets and the effort.

So there we were at the doors of the Wheel armed with our golden tickets and looking at a horrendously long queue. For non-Egyptians reading, you couldn’t possibly understand what “queue” means in Egypt, I’d explain, but I’m pretty sure I’ll get criticised for speaking unfavourably of our lovely Cairo. Utilise your imaginations though, think “stampede”.

Using a buddy technique, hand holding, some creative stair hopping and a walking and evading technique so complex it would qualify as dancing; we make it across the Wheel grounds to the designated stage area. At this point I am both shocked at the sheer amount of people there who seem interested in Ziad Rahbani and in the age range and nature of those “cultured” attendees. Needless to say, gates having been opened for only five minutes, yet the seated area is already fully occupied by attendees who pulled strings and used a rear entrance.

Using brute force to maintain any semblance of personal space, we occupy a little area at the front to the right of the stage, on the off chance the piano was going to be on that side. Tens (hundreds?) of individuals filled that space in the river hall, crowding, pushing, arguing, chanting, carrying signs and flags and calling his name. Sawy came out a couple of times asking people not to smoke and to practice patience. We were surrounded by the same crowd and attitude you would get at the stadium. Only this was a Jazz concert!

Ziad finally arrives and starts, visibility of the stage is almost non-existent. I had friends who actually opted to go sit by the Nile river bank and watch off the monitors and just listen through the speakers. Ziad himself was quite hassled, he made it a point to ask the random chanters and clappers to quiet down so that he and the band could play. He also had to remind the lighting engineer that less really is more, as he and the band were unable to read their notes. He didn’t sing during the first portion, which came as a semi-disappointment.

On the plus side, the music was heavenly, the brass section brilliant and the drummers inspired. I was quite impressed by the young vocal he invited out. Yet it is a truly alarming thing when the highlight of a jazz concert is a cameo by Wust El Balad’s Hany. He seems to have quiet enjoyed himself. I thought he was pretty good. Crowd loved him as usual.

After the first break my claustrophobia was starting to kick-in. I abandoned our location and joined my friends at the river bank. Only at that moment they restarted with “Walla Keif”, Ziad’s version of Autumn Leaves originally sung by Fairouz. The lovely female vocalist I had actually enjoyed earlier did a horrible job of it. So we leave, finding nothing else to keep us. Driven off by the commercialisation of culture, the horrible acoustics, the lousy organisation and all the damn cigarette smoke.

I just love this album !

Cold water, cleaning my wounds
A sad parade, with a single balloon
I’m done with this, I’m counting to ten
Bluest seas, running to them

I feel like I am watching everything from space
And in a minute I’ll hear my name and I’ll wake
I think the finish line’s a good place we could start
Take a deep breath, take in all that you could want

Losing My Religion ~ R.E.M

Tagged by Jessyz.

RULES:
1. Put your iTunes/music player on Shuffle.
2. For each question, pres the next button to get you answer.
3. YOU MUST WRITE THAT SONG NAME DOWN NO MATTER WHAT!! After you’ve answered all of the questions, tag 5 other people and then let them know they’ve been tagged to do them themselves.

1.IF SOMEONE SAYS “IS THIS OKAY” YOU SAY?
How Far We’ve Come ~ Matchbox Twenty

2.WHAT WOULD BEST DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONALITY?
Love is a Battlefield ~ Carrie Underwood

3.WHAT DO YOU LIKE IN A GUY/GIRL?
Runaway ~ Bon Jovi

4. HOW DO YOU FEEL TODAY?
Room 21~ Hinder

5.WHAT IS YOUR LIFE’S PURPOSE?
Cry Baby Cry ~ Santana

6.WHAT DO YOUR FRIENDS THINK OF YOU?
Africa ~ Karl Wolf

7. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR PARENTS?
Ironic ~ Alanis Morisette (Interesting :))

8.WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT VERY OFTEN?
Still ~ Jennifer Lopez

9.WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR BEST FRIEND?
Broken ~ Seether

10.WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE PERSON YOU LIKE?
We Will Rock You ~ Queen

11.WHAT IS YOUR LIFE STORY?
Love Today ~ Mika

12.WHAT DO YOU THINK WHEN YOU SEE THE PERSON YOU LIKE?
Grace Kelly ~ Mika (Ouch)

13.WHAT DO YOUR PARENTS THINK OF YOU?
Chasing Cars ~ Snow Patrol (Yeah I guess they would)

14. WHAT WILL YOU DANCE TO AT YOUR WEDDING?
What About Now ~ Chris Daughtry

15. WHAT WILL THEY PLAY AT YOUR FUNERAL?
Where the Streets Have No Name ~ U2

16.WHAT IS YOUR HOBBY/INTEREST?
Pon De Replay ~ Rihanna

17. WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST SECRET?
This I Promise You ~ Ronan Keating

18.WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR FRIENDS?
I Want you Back for Good ~ Take That

19. WHAT SHOULD YOU POST THIS AS?
Losing My Religion ~ R.E.M.

20. WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOURSELF?
You Give Love a Bad Name ~ Bon Jovi

Get your ipods/itunes (whatever!) out people because I would really love to know what’s on them.

Tagging queens of tunes:

Dee, Sou and Ravine.

Song obssession

Send someone to love me
I need to rest in arms
Keep me safe from harm
In pouring rain

Give me endless summer
Lord I fear the cold
Feel I’m getting old
Before my time

As my soul heals the shame
I will grow through this pain
Lord I’m doing all I can
To be a better man

Go easy on my conscience
‘Cause it’s not my fault
I know I’ve been taught
To take the blame

Rest assured my angels
Will catch my tears
Walk me out of here
I’m in pain

As my soul heals the shame
I will grow through this pain
Lord I’m doing all I can
To be a better man

Once you’ve found that lover
You’re homeward bound
Love is all around
Love is all around

I know some have fallen
On stony ground
But Love is all around

Send someone to love me
I need to rest in arms
Keep me safe from harm
In pouring rain

Give me endless summer
Lord I fear the cold
Feel I’m getting old
Before my time

As my soul heals the shame
I will grow through this pain
Lord I’m doin’ all I can
To be a better man

I can die a happy woman!

I had promised friends in Cairo live footage a massive amount of photos and potentially recordings of parts of the play in attempt to share the experience.

To all of those I am extremely sorry, security measures were insane and we were stripped of all potentially sound and imagry related articles.. and I mean EVERYTHING. They have made us check our gadgets at the door then subjected us to metal detectors and bag searches. Figures they would… couldn’t make up my mind whether I was upset I could not immortalize this experience, document it in film and print, record it for prosperity… on the other hand I understand how this could prove do be a distraction, an invasion of the intimacy of the performance itself (not to mention a threat to the privacy of ruling family which was there to attend.)

Forgive me; I’ve over looked giving you the facts.

Place: Sharjah University City Hall
Time: May 6th at 8:30 pm
Event: Fairouz’s rendition of Sa7 El Nawm

We’d made countless phone calls, made futile roundtrips to Sharjah and ended up paying courtesy of Master Card. Then on the day of the event I stood in queue an hour or so early to pick up my tickets from the box office at the gate.

We got in and seated with what must have been the largest group of Lebanese citizens I’ve ever seen in one location. Was nice hearing the pre-show hype. I sat there trying to memorize it all, so I could be accurate in my account. To tell you about the odd shaped theatre that had been stretched an odd way leaving you with excellent view but no leg room whatsoever. To describe to you the plush interior of gold, wood and blue Iranian designs in Moroccan style wood panels on the walls.

The musicians where no where to be seen, yet sure enough come 8:30 the famed Rahbani tunes filled the air. It had begun! There she stood her back to us holding her umbrella (Rihanna has completely branded that word for life); silent… still.. then she breaks into songs and the crowd rise to their feet in appreciation as the clapping goes on for minutes almost making the play impossible to complete, yet she sings through it all… loud … clear… majestically.

The play itself is a classic musical with all the elements that define Lebanon: politics, music, dabkeh, humor and phenomenal singing. I loved the simplicity of the story and the moral of the tail. I soared with Fairouz as she hit notes I can’t believe she can still muster and just lost myself to the music of the Ra7abna with every chord. I got sucked into the tale and enthusiastically clapped and tapped my feet with every dabka.

When the curtain hit the stage, I was disappointed it was over. More so that I couldn’t share that experience with all of you. You know what the funny thing is, the story of the play still holds true. For all who know what I’m talking about “Sa7 El Nawm”.

SOS and TV

Like quite a few of my fellow bloggers, I ended up at the SOS concert this Friday. Only due to inconvenient MBA schedule I was there for a grand total of 1 hour. During this hour of basking in the sun I got to hear a band I’d never heard before “IdleMind”. I must say I liked them a lot. Poor guys had enough technical difficulties to put the organizers to shame but took it all with a smile. They sang originals that were their lyrics and music and I loved the performance and the lead’s voice.

You can check out their music at http://www.idle-mind.com

Meanwhile, at our household we are big on watching “El3ashera Masa2an”, it saves you the trouble of reading the next day’s papers and is not a pro-gov show. Which is good enough for us. Anyways not here to discuss Mona’s choice of guests, rather the advertisement spots. During a commercial break an ad came on that left me thrilled, my father for the life of him couldn’t see why. Well you have to be a play station gamer to appreciate this. I leave you all with Coca Cola’s ingenious Grand Theft Auto inspired Ad. Just BRILLIANT.

Lost – One TV ;)

Hmmm, might have plagerized it, not sure. All I know is I can hear this going through my head to the music of one of “One TV”‘s spots. If its a song, I apologize in advance. I can hear it so vividly. Possible that I’ve written entirely new words to the melody 🙂

Lost
Without compass nor map
Weathering wind and the seas
No beginning and no end
To this journey nor for me

Rise
From the ashes and live
Son of Adam and of Eve
Leave that body in the ground
Keep only laughter and the tears

Try
To find a where and a why
With a hunger and a greed
You’ll make errors as you go
Learn through trial and repeat

Lost
Without compass nor map
Weathering wind and the seas
No beginning and no end
To this journey nor for me

Fadfadation’s Tag

Tagged by Fadfadation. Upon answering 27 questions apparently I’m:


What Famous Leader Are You?
personality tests by similarminds.com

What leader did you expect I would be?

If you are reading… you are tagged!

Meanwhile, bloggerz, I’m sick as a dog and any medical advise welcome. Provided the word “needle” is not mentioned.

Also, I’m in love with this advertisement. Can somebody PLEASE e-mail me the song!!

Post concert commentary :)

So my dad decided to take pity on me and allow such atrocities. I have a hole in my wallet where 400 le used to reside before. Was it worth it? You evaluate for yourself.

Friends were kind enough to pick me up from the house at 6. It took us 2 hours to get to the venue. Streets were excessively crowded and nothing is labelled you pretty much have to guess where you are going. OR ask a cop upon which you will be told “Shakira, ew3a weshak, tany yemeeen!!!”.

You finally get there, you park your car and try to find the astronomer within to try and mark the spot where you left your beloved vehicle. There is very little you can use as markers, next to the Porsche, or besides the second lamp post to the left!! Finally you give up and start heading for the buses. You are given a ride to the stage.

Most people didn’t have a chance to eat at home so the organizers were shrewd enough to rent out booths to fastfood chains where people got burgers and pizzas and other such nutritious junk at ridiculous prices. You waltzed in to the actual stage area to discover that anybody who paid 750 for their ticket were ripped off big time. There were no seperations, was one big happy mob. To the right the VIP section looked promising, but no such luck, their area was elevated so I’m sure they had a hell of a view.

Shakira came on at 10:30 (TYPICAL), dark stage, single spot on a guy playing the guitar to Fairouz’s A3teny Elnay wa Ghany. I love Fairouz, but wasn’t sure what the hell was going on untill you heard Shakira’s unmistakable voice singing the first paragraph. I’m sure Fairouz tossed in her sleep but still, Shakira is Shakira bardo 🙂

Concert carried on, she is quite the entertainer, she got us acquainted with slow songs from her new album, shared childhood memories, danced to La Tortura and Whenever Wherever. They paused often for costume changes but during that time there was always plenty of action on the well equipped stage. I loved the lighting and the laser games on the gauze screen. Twice she seemingly ended the concert only to resume again. At some point she jumped into the crowd (don’t think she was fully aware of the risks involved with such folly) and they went wild. Girl’s got charisma. All she had to do was blow a kiss into the air and the crowd went insane.

I thoroughly enjoyed her show but I must say I HATE the venue. The ground is flat making it impossible for anybody shorter than 170 cm to see the stage let alone Shakira. Screens were a blessing. We danced we had fun but for 80 minutes of Shakira you had to drive 2 hours to get there in impossible traffic. THEN after the concert is over it takes a miracle to find your car. Everything looks different by night, you have to walk back since the buses have disappeared. You finally find your car you get in, now drive real careful cause the ground is sand and stone and cars around you are getting stuck and experiencing tyre problems. An hour later you finally reach the road. After that it takes like 20 minutes driving like maniacs to get back to Mohandseen through Lebanon square.

Lessons learned: Next time, rent a 4×4 and spend the night at the Menahouse Oberoi. It’s worth it to avoid the traffic and the hassle and the car accidents. Anyways….

Must give thanks to our courageous organiser and driver. Props to you wallahy ya Mustafa. Also saw a ton of people I know who I had not seen in months. That was cool. So thank you Shakira, thank you Cairo, good night and see you next year.

Unwind

Different people do different things to unwind, personally when I’m not working, studying or hanging out with friends I enjoy a little tv. Series such as Lost, Prison Break and Desperate Housewives; movies or just reality TV shows. The following based on such incident so if this is too airheaded for you click next.

This week on the Arab version of the Fame School reality tv show, namely Star Academy, two of my favourite performers (Tina and Mohamed Ammah) are nominated with quite high odds that they are both going home.

(YES yes star academy is a waste of time and money and there are people dying somewhere and starving someplace else and there is a million different better things I could be doing/ watching and this show is the devil. Did I miss anything???)

Anyways…. not asking you to vote for either of them god forbid!!!!! Instead I kinda like this couple and think they are both great overall performers who can sing, dance, play instruments, write lyrics and compose. I leave you with a duo that they wrote, as a tribute to them so to speak.

Shakira

Ahem… can somebody please shed some light on this:

shakiraliveconcertad_01.jpg

Doesn’t take a genius to figure it out. Shakira is coming to Cairo baby!!

According to posters on Cairo streets concert is on the 28th (a Wednesday) meanwhile nobody knows anything. I called people at MobiNil and Orascom. I wanna go!!!!!!! AND I want VIP invites cause I don’t intend to get run over by the stampede that is going to be there.

Does anybody know anything???

Song of the day: Hips don’t lie 🙂

To Sou

I’m a woman of words. Yet will let someone else do the talking for a change. One of your favourite bands, and who are steadfastly becoming one of my own.

“Fix You”

When you try your best, but you don’t succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep
Stuck in reverse
When the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can’t replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

High up above or down below
When you’re too in love to let it go
If you never try you’ll never know
Just what you’re worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face
And I…

Tears stream down on your face
I promise you I will learn from the mistakes
Tears stream down your face
And I…

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Hope you are feeling better dear. 🙂