Syria’s first rap album

The Sham MCs, a group of nine young rappers, recently released, Crossword, Syria’s first rap album. The group’s increased exposure reflects the growing diversity of Syria’s music culture. Nevertheless, their album has been met with controversy, typical of Syrian reactions to Western culture such as their anti-Facebook policies. Group members of the Sham MCs voiced ...

580254_090929_sham_mcs12.jpg
580254_090929_sham_mcs12.jpg

The Sham MCs, a group of nine young rappers, recently released, Crossword, Syria's first rap album. The group's increased exposure reflects the growing diversity of Syria's music culture. Nevertheless, their album has been met with controversy, typical of Syrian reactions to Western culture such as their anti-Facebook policies.

Group members of the Sham MCs voiced their annoyance through their music over such negative reactions:

The Sham MCs, a group of nine young rappers, recently released, Crossword, Syria’s first rap album. The group’s increased exposure reflects the growing diversity of Syria’s music culture. Nevertheless, their album has been met with controversy, typical of Syrian reactions to Western culture such as their anti-Facebook policies.

Group members of the Sham MCs voiced their annoyance through their music over such negative reactions:

“The second track [on the album] is called Against the Flow, [because] it’s like we’re going against everybody’s idea and they hate rap because it’s like a Western thing.”

Furthermore, 21 year old, Sham MC member, Badi Issa, who credits his first exposure to rap as an Eminen video in the sixth grade, argues his group is promoting Syrian, not American, culture, saying the group is trying to:

“do something for us, for Syria, for the youth of Syria, for the land of Syria – something that has an identity of its own.”

Recently, following the end of Ramadan, the Sham MCs played a three day tour in venues normally reserved for traditional Syrian musicians, and this past summer they became the first rap group to perform at a Syrian festival, alongside George Wassouf, Syria’s most famous singer.

The Sham MCs are currently streaming Crossword on their Myspace page and have over 1600 friends on Facebook. Jeff Chang looked at hip-hop’s rapid globalization for FP in 2007.

Myspace /Sham MC’s Pics

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