BEIRUT — In collaboration with nine renowned international Arab rappers and artists, Anghami — the region’s premier music streaming platform — launched its first-ever English/Arabic hip-hop cypher on Wednesday.
Directed by the platform’s hip-hop editor, Hassane Dennaoui — aka Big Hass — the “Anghami Exclusive” recording comes as an effort to highlight the important and growing role of this music genre across the Middle East.
“It gives strong hints of unity, power, lyrical diversity and, above all, richness in Arab culture,” Big Hass told StepFeed.
The first edition of the cypher is a one-beat track produced by Abu Dhabi-born Iraqi/Canadian music producer Sandhill, elevated by DJ Lethal Skillz‘ scratching and edited by visual artist Raed Al Murish.
The official music video was shot in nine different cities (Makkah, Los Angeles, Beirut, Cairo, Montreal, Ramallah, Amsterdam, Dubai and London).
“I’d like to shout out to the videographers that put time and efforts to shoot these videos, in addition to Raed Al Murish, who put together an amazing edit,” Big Hass said.
It features some of the Arab world’s most talented artists, including Lowkey (Iraq/UK), Shiboba (Saudi Arabia), Omar Offendum (Syria/U.S.), Bu Kolthoum (Syria), Meryem Saci (Algeria/Canada), Narcy (Iraq/Canada), Edd Abbas (Lebanon), GioTwo (Jordan), Deeb (Egypt) and Muqata’a (Palestine).
“This track showcases some of the most amazing diversity in Arab thought and lyrical expression throughout both the MENA region and diaspora nowadays,” rapper, poet and activist Omar Offendum told StepFeed. “I’m proud to be a part of it and grateful to Big Hass and Anghami for the opportunity.”
“I’d like to thank Anghami for believing in my vision,” Big Hass said. “This is a very powerful message that we are strong, we got amazing talent in the form of rhythm and poetry. To be able to get those incredible names is an honor and I’m sure that whoever listens to the track will feel the passion of these MC’s.”
Founded in Lebanon by Eddy Maroun and Elie Habib, Anghami — which is Arabic for “My Tunes” — first emerged around six years ago and always believed in nurturing and supporting the music scene in the Middle East.
As such, it was important to acknowledge hip-hop as a strong music genre in the regional arena.
“We at Anghami recognize the importance of hip-hop as a catalyst in the evolution of the music scene in the Middle East and GCC,” said Maroun, the company’s co-founder.
WATCH THE VIDEO: