Roughly 1 year ago we covered the fundraising efforts of Palestinian protest musician Jowan Safadi. At the time he had 2 new albums in the works and now he contacted Shouts HQ’s to let us know of the success of the albums. Now he has released a new single titled ‘Super White Man’ (الرجل الأبيض الخارق) that comes in a beautiful animated video package.
A veteran of the protest music scene, Safadi has been writing music for the past 20 years about his experience as an artist and human being living in Palestine territories.
Safadi wrote us a message about how his songs had traveled across the Arab world and its protests:
“…first of all allow me to thank you for the support with the album crowdfunding, a year ago. It came out and had a decent success. Songs featured there were played in the Lebanon revolution and protests around the Arab world.”
In ‘Super White Man’ Safadi addresses the powers that oppress and inflict perpetual pain onto people. Safadi himself has been arrested, tortured and oppressed by Israel, Jordan and other authorities and in the song he paint as picture of his experience in order to raise awareness of the issue.
“They told me everything about the holocaust but no one told why I should pay the cost They played wars and told me that I lost and all the losers were forced to flee Oh, super white man Salamo alikom (peace upon you) How does it feel to solve your problem and create one for me and when… will I be free?”
Moroccan artists have long had to face serious oppression and attacks on to their freedom of expression. The latest victim of Moroccan government and police system is rapper Gnawi (real name Mohamed Mounir) who recently rapped on a track that criticizes the government and the economic division that young and older people experience on a daily basis.
The track’s lyrics cover a lot of ground and even criticize the king of Morocco which is a criminal offense in the country.
Apparently Gnawi can appeal the court’s decision. We at Shouts call upon the Moroccan government to stop oppressing free speech and artists’ freedom to create and work.
One can only wonder why governments are so afraid of music. After all, they are the ones with the big weapons – how much can a rap song harm them? A protest song is supposed inspire the masses though, and if successful, the people who listen and take the message to heart can join hands and tear down fascist governments.
That must be why governments put singers in prison. To prevent such possible damage to their powers. That is also why we must all keep on singing, and fight for the rights of those currently locked up.
Halldór is the managing editor of Shouts – Music from the Rooftops!, an investigative journalist, audio engineer and an animal rights activist on a nomad journey through Europe – still without a definite destination.
In Iran the Islamic government restricts women from performing their music alone on stage. For one musician, Farzane Zamen, this drove her out of her home country and eventually forced her to seek asylum in Scotland.
Today she is a working musician in that foreign place. Time will only tell if she will be safe to travel back to Iran but until then she will continue to make her music.
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