Revolutionary music from the Middle East and North Africa
Most of these songs were inspired by the Arab Spring or in some cases inspired the Arab Spring in ways. There are PLENTY more out there I haven’t heard but these are ones I thought were worth sharing.
Before you get started on the listening however I would like to say that my posting them here does not mean I endorse the lyrics/content.
El General – Rayes Lebled
A Tunisian rapper whose real name is Hamada Ben Amor. He was detained and questioned by the Tunisian authorities for 3 days in January because of this song. Read a BBC article on the role of hip hop in the Arab Spring here.
Master Mimz – Back Down Mubarak
A female London-based Moroccan rapper whose real name is Myriam Bouchentouf. She was inspired by her love of Egyptian culture while watching events play out on Tahrir Square. Read an article about Master Mimz here.
Deeb – Masrah Deeb
Egyptian rapper and poet Mohamed El Deeb. This video (as it states at the beginning) was shot days before the revolution in Egypt started. Read an interview with Deeb here.
Freeway, Amir Sulaiman, Ayah, The Narcicyst and Omar Offendum – #Jan25
A group of talented hip hop artists from around the Middle East joined together to make this song. It’s title refers to the start date of the Egyptian revolution. Read an interview with Omar Offendum, a Los Angeles-based Syrian-American rapper, on Arab hip hop here.
Elreda – TwoSea Revolt
Lebanese-American hip hop artist sings a song about Bahrain. Check out his website.
Arab World Unite
Produced by DJ Outlaw in collaboration with 2seas Records featuring Qusai from Saudi, Rush from Egypt, Balti from Tunisia, Ayzee from Saudi, Vico from Lebanon, Flipp from Bahrain, Murder Eyez from Syria, Timz from Iraq and Talal from Palestine. Visit DJ Outlaw’s website.
Mansour Tehrani – Yar Dabestani Man
This is a popular Iranian revolutionary song. Yar dabestani man means my schoolmate.