The Time of Falling Walls

The time of falling walls, cutting the barbed wires… Twenty-five years ago, the time was full of critical events. But is this a reason for writing songs even today? We tend to forget that barbed-wire fences still remain in many parts of the world. One of such places is Egypt.

Youssra El Hawary has written a simple song called El Soor (A Wall). Catchy melody, colourful video. You think – nice piece. The lyrics, however, give you the punch line:

“In front of the wall. In front of those who built it. In front of those who raised its height. And in front of those who stand protecting it. Stood a simple man. Urinating. On the wall. On those who built it. On those who raised it. On those who stand protecting it.”

Youssra is an Egyptian accordionist, composer, singer and actor. She doesn’t hesitate to make fun of the Egyptian society and politics in her songs. In a short time, she has become one of the strong and outspoken female voices of Egypt – and it has been El Soor that has attracted greater public attention to her. She’s been nominated for an Honesty Oscar in February this year, a prize awarded to activists and anti-corruption fighters. Together with her group, she has also recorded music for the film “Factory Girl” by Mohamed Khan.

P.S.: Youssra’s rolling Arabic sounds so French-like! Or is it “just” the accordion? :- )

article by | Vojtěch Sukdolák
published on 9/12/2014