Zeid Hamdan, hailing from the picturesque landscapes of Lebanon, stands as one of the local music scene's stalwarts. Echoing the likes of Quincy Jones in terms of diversification and collaboration, Hamdan's influence on the music scene has been nothing short of transformative.
From the late nineties, Zeid Hamdan rose as a beacon of innovation in Arabic pop music. His influence spanned collaborations with remarkable artists like Bedouin Burger Muhammad Abdullah, Tanjaret Daghet, and Marie Abou Khaled, among many others. The list reads like the credits of a mega-blockbuster film, showcasing the vibrancy and breadth of his career. Notably, his musical odyssey took flight with the band "Soap Kills," heralding the arrival of a prodigious talent in the realm of music.
Self-taught and driven by an insatiable passion for talent, Zeid possesses a golden touch. But what's his secret sauce when it comes to collaboration? "Talent, endurance, passion, and kindness," he shares. Simplistic in words, but profound in practice.
When pressed about his top projects, with the nonchalance of a maestro who's seen many a sunset, Zeid quips, "I love every project I produce." He pivots to highlight his latest three marvels, namely 'Bedouin Burger: Abaya Road' and 'Zeid Hamdan music for films.' It's akin to asking a parent about their favorite child - they're all special, each leaving an indelible mark.
"I love every project I produce."
Recalling performances that have left an impact, Zeid reminisces about the electric atmosphere of Somerset house in July, where he had the privilege of opening for Tinariwen. He fondly recalls Edinburgh's vibrancy last week and the unforgettable evening at Ked in Beirut this past June. The tales of these performances hint at a tapestry of diverse audiences, cultures, and sounds – each one a chapter in the book of his musical journey.
Drawing a parallel to Bob Ross's painting on a canvas, Zeid's creative process is organic, free-flowing, and full of happy little accidents. "I mostly try to stay connected to what I sincerely love," he muses. Armed with a keyboard or guitar, he lets his emotions and creativity intertwine, producing melodies that evolve with time. The resulting symphonies are ones he could listen to without ever growing weary, even if it meant releasing them sparsely.
But when does Zeid decide a song is ready to be unveiled to the world? It's after he's played it a thousand times over, tested on every sound system imaginable, and still finds himself basking in its rhythm and lyrics. It's a testament to the man's dedication to quality over quantity.
Pondering the music scene in Lebanon, if granted one wish, Zeid's eyes light up with the vision of fostering budding talent. "Open 50 well-equipped and cheap rehearsal spaces," he exclaims. For him, this simple addition would be a game-changer, elevating the music scenes across genres and providing artists the platform they truly deserve.
"Open 50 well-equipped and cheap rehearsal spaces,"
Zeid Hamdan, in essence, is not just a musician; he's a movement, steadily reshaping the contours of Arabic pop music. Whether you're a casual listener or an avid fan, his work beckons. So, next time you're flipping through tracks, let his harmonies remind you of the sheer power of music to transcend, transform, and truly touch the soul.
REGIONAL is musivv’s segment featuring Arab artists in the Middle East. Features under this segment are eligible for a nomination under this category in the Musivv Awards’ annual recognition.