Lauren Kardos from George Washington University went to Egypt with AMIDEAST for the Spring 2011 semester. After the revolution she relocated to Jordan where she continued her studes through the end of the summer. Enjoy this sample of one Middle Eastern singer, Nancy Ajram, and her entertaining music video.
When stores and taxis in Egypt and Jordan are not playing old 90’s music, Whitney Houston, or Celine Dion, I get to hear some of my favorite new Arabic songs! Some of the most famous singers come out of Egypt and Lebanon and include Tamer Hosni, Amr Diab, Nancy Ajram, and Haifa Wahbe. While I’m also in love with the classic singers such as Um Kalthoum and Abdul Haleem, these newer artists in the Middle East have such catchy, fun songs.
These songs, along with the accompanying music videos, are an interesting contradiction to what Jordanian and Egyptian actually is in real life. Nancy Ajram from Lebanon, for example, has had plastic surgery (to look like Renee Zellweger), and all of her videos are, well, kind of scandalous. She wears exposing clothing and is always UNCOMFORTABLY close with men, even for me. My new favorite catchy Nancy Ajram song is called Sheikh al-Shabab, something like “Big man of the young boys.” The song is a lot of fun and the video is kind of hilarious, I will try to post it here. I first watched the video and heard the song in Egypt as nearly every restaurant has a tv playing music videos. Honestly now I just love the song because it reminds me of when I first watched it in Egypt, and it’s catchiness. It is interesting how Jordanians and Egyptians percieve Nancy – most of them consider her very fake and dislike her music. For me, it’s just a fun song to listen to, and she looks a little ridiculous in the video. Enjoy!