Lately I seem to find myself doing housework to Arabic music from the 1950’s and ‘60’s. I imagine I’m declaring love that surpasses understanding or reason while I iron shirts, and asking God for patience with a lover’s thick headedness while wiping down the countertops, complete with emphatic hand gestures and head tosses.
Yara—“Hawel Marra,” 2009
In this dreamlike offering from Lebanese artist Yara, she offers her lover to “just try to leave, then tell me what you see. Then, try to return to me. Tell me, can you see the difference?” She reminds him that all the tenderness he needs she guards in her heart and creates comfort in her strength. She passionately proclaims that she is the fire of his soul, and that she will give him peace. But if he is still not convinced, just try to leave, and come back—then he will find out the difference for himself.
A family tree of pop, tracing the musical influences of popular songs to their starting points. This flow chart depicts the origins of the familiar hooks represented in famous (“On the Floor,” “Lambada”) and not so famous (“Lila ya Omri,” “Sochna Kya Jo Bhi Hoga”) songs from around the world. Note: There are many covers of Lambada, but I wanted to portray more or less original songs. Oh, and as a bonus, you can see my lovely stick figures reenact memorable scenes from the music videos.