19 March 2007

When the girl won't come to Palestine, Palestine will come to the girl

D.A.M. in Södra Teatern, Stockholm 16th March 2007

There should be something wrong with the PR of D.A.M. - the great palestinian hip hop group - when I heard the news of their concert in Stockholm, Sweden, from... Tel Aviv!

For an old B-girl like myself (yes, it's true) it was of course love at first sight; hip hop and rap, arabic and Middle Eastern melodies and a palestinian passionate freedom message - ALL IN ONE! Oh, can it get any better? Yes; on stage, live!

Now, the struggles of a old (well, I'm at least not 18 anymore!!) hidjabi mother of three to come to that concert... I tell ya. First mission: find a co B-girl. Impossible, but friend of 14 years, miss C (who later on, upon arriving home after the show, when her husband asked her "So, was the concert any good?" would reply with a painful silence) would do. Second mission: getting rid of my children. Collecting a favour from another old friend, all three of them where to sleep over at her place. Our children love each other. Third mission: convince husband. "Darling, I'm gonna go visit miss C on friday and we'll go the see a palestinian musicgroup who sings about palestinian freedom, at a theatre, ok habibi?" Sounds cultural, right!? "Ok, yes, sure". Mission accomplished. After a schedule worthy of a prime minister (11.45 Bake bread 12.15 Vacuum 12.20 Hang clothes 12.30 Wash dishes 12.45 Pack bags for sleepover 12.55 Leave home 13.00 Bring the girls from kindergarten 13.20 Bring son from school 13.30 Leave children at friends house... and son on. I also had a doctor's appointment that afternoon).

Oh, I'm going on and on. You don't wanna know that! You want to know about D.A.M.! Well, soon me and miss C were on the way. Before leaving we looked at each other, shaking our heads, saying "Gosh, we're too old for this!" Turns out, upon arriving, that we were far from the oldest, thank you very much. Some other hidjabi girls there too, great.

When the show finally started, they had a big screen TV showing various parts of palestinian life together with some poetical powerful lyrics. Went straight into my heart. And I had trouble standig up straight for a while (told you I was old!). For me it was a moment of full circle.

"ad-D.A.M. ja'een...!"
crowd going "As-Salamu Aleykum!"
"... min Falasteen!"
crowd going "As-Salamu Aleykum!"
(The D.A.M. are coming... Peace be upon you!... from Palestine... Peace be upon you!)

Here's what I liked most about them; they were passionate! Far too many times I've witnessed apathy and hopelessness in the eyes of palestinians. Here on stage was pure passion. They are skilled. Apart from having a message and a coldmine to pour from (you need to be angry if you're gonna be good at hip hop in my humble opinion), they are skilled with lyrics, rhymes and melodies. And last but not least, they were down to earth. Spoke heartfelt and honest to the audience. The only, only thing I would remove was the F*** word (I told you I was too OLD!!).

Signed and all

After the concert I of course had to buy their new CD and was lucky to have it signed and exchange a few words with them. I said silly things like "The show was geat!" and bla bla, I even said it in english, why when I could have said it in arabic to impress a bit? Ah well.

My husband came to drive us home. "How was it?" he said. I gave him the CD to put it on in the car. My husband is 12 years older than me and part of another generation, so I had no hopes. Upon hearing he said "Oh, they sound like american groups!" with a big smile on his face, thinking that he was actually smart to know that and point that out. I rolled my eyes and said "Yes, habibi, that's right. It's called H I P H O P, habibi".
After having dropped me off at home he had to go back to work I asked him to give me the CD. To my surprise he said "La la la, khaliha! - No no no, I'll keep it!" Not too old after all. None of us. Pure blogotherapy.


loolt said...

looks like you had a great time :D
lool, @ husband being too 'old' to understand hiphop :)

personally I am not a fan of hip hop OR rap... but liked theire music... maybe is becasue I understand where they are coming from :)

Lisa said...

I am so glad you enjoyed the concert! I know DAM are fantastic performers, so I was pretty sure you'd come back with a positive report. Love the bit about your husband getting into the music. :)

rami said...

I saw a documentary on SVT the other day where one american musician tries to create dialouge between palestinians and israelis. The footage included a few songs by DAM, not my cup of tea, but sounds interesting :)

Lirun said...

sounds very cool..

i love how all rappers do the bad boy keep-ya-distance-y'all arm fold..


IsraeliDiary said...

I'm glad you had a great time. :)

I hope they will have a lot of performances in Gaza and the West Bank to give them some hope and encourage them to choose the way of peace. =)

MomTo5 said...

salaam,must i write in english :) i am so glad for you i would like to go there whith you,but i guess my husband is harder to overtyga...hehe