Translated into English as ‘Bay Laurel’, RAND’s latest opus fuses orchestral overtones with jazz-like tendencies. A breezy intro leads into a bed of heavenly strings, barely-there percussion and sensuous sax, before soft vocals float on top. Taking centre stage, a sax breakdown is beautifully restrained, creating a glorious gateway for RAND to carry the track home amidst images of sepia-tinged charm.
RAND is a family affair formed in 2013 by three talented siblings – Lili, Youssef and Jamale Abou Hamad – who all studied at the Lebanese National Higher Conservatory of Music. Singer-songwriter Youssef is an accomplished composer and pianist, while sisters Lili and Jamale’s voices complement each other perfectly. As a music group, the trio channel their individual musical strengths into a unique acoustic sound and have built a repertoire of oriental and occidental classics, along with original songs.
With local and international media attention snowballing over the years, the siblings have performed as RAND across a number of cultural venues from Lebanon and Egypt to the USA. In 2019, the band started collaborating with guest musicians when playing live and, so far, the likes of Elie Yammouni, Souhail Elias, and Haissam Izrafil have joined them on stage.
The follow-up to last year’s Haki Ma Naal track, ‘Rah Ebaa’ sees RAND collaborate again with arranger Marc Abou Naoum and sound engineer Ralph Sleiman to capture that majestic orchestral sound. “Our successful partnership with Marc and Ralph since 2016 has been key to express the singularity of our music,” says Youssef.
Our successful partnership with Marc and Ralph since 2016 has been key to express the singularity of our music
The beauty of everlasting love is evidenced in the video for ‘Rah Ebaa’, which shows the unbreakable bond between different generations of the same family. Simply shot but with high impact, the video serves as a timely reminder to tell those we hold dear how much they are loved.
Out now, ‘Rah Ebaa’ is simply a masterclass of emotional beauty and another exploration into RAND’s diversified musical landscape.