Blog February 6, 2014
Cairo Calling- Chaabi on the Move
Ever since Afropop traveled to Egypt in the summer of 2011, we've been interested in the rapidly developing genre electro chaabi (or mahraganat as it's sometimes called), a high-intensity, youth-based style that jacked traditional wedding/pop music, yoked it to insane tempos, screeching keyboard sounds, and an aesthetic that resembles a car crash in the best possible way. Our friends in the Cairo Liberation Front (who made us this sweet-as-all-get-out mix) have done a lot to put the music on the map. And now? The whole scene seems like it's about to get another major boost. Electro Chaabi artists Sadat, Figo, Diesel and Knaka met with Kode9, Faze Miyake and Artwork in London on Jan 16th to discuss where their music came from, where it is now, and where it could go. Also, they brought along some music. And, as usual, it kills.Teaming up with the Rinse FM crew, they made a great mix. (Thanks to our buds Ghetto Bassquake for posting this!) Now hold onto your hats, because it goes WAY beyond a simple meeting. It turns out that this trip was just the first step in a much larger project, one sponsored by the British Council. The Egyptian artists not only came to talk music, but to get some valuable advice, meeting with members of the more established British electronic music scene to discuss the business side of the music business. Through efforts like this, the council hopes "to develop a mutually beneficial relationship with capacity for creative growth on both sides," working with Rinse FM and the Cairo based label 100 Copies (Read our interview with them here) Sadat and Kode 9? That's a pairing that brings up some real possibilities. So stay tuned for more info (and hopefully music) as we get it. But for now, be sure to check out that guest mix (their tunes start at 1:23:52)