|Shébani & RAYAN performing at Sole DXB 2017 - Pic Credit: Waleed Shah|
On Dec 9th, 2017, Dubai-based Iraqi singer/songwriter "Shébani" took the stage at Sole DXB and it was so dope to watch her perform old & new tracks on a big stage like that. Shout out to the guys at Sole DXB for their great work & dope vibes.
She was accompanied by her producer and motivator, the genius "RAYAN". Both were incredible on stage and I am so proud of them.
It's been amazing watching Shébani grow into her own artist and paving the way also for so many Arab female singers. Shébani was the ONLY Arab female to participate in the Sole DXB music line-up for this year. That is an amazing accomplishment and we need to push for more female representation in the years to come.
I've sat down with Shébani & RAYAN and asked them few questions about their Sole DXB set, check it out below:-
Big Hass: How was it preparing for a big show like Sole Dxb?
Shébani: It was very similar to prepping for any other show to be honest, except you had to keep in mind that this stage is twice as big and the festival is twice as important. I try to treat it like any other show because I don't really tend to give different amounts of efforts no matter how big or small our performance will be. This helps me reduce a lot of the stress and the nerves I get before a show, it's constant practice leading up to bigger opportunities I guess.
RAYAN: It wasn’t too different to any other show we prepare for in all honesty. We were fortunate enough to have a string of shows leading up to sole, so we tried and tested out a number of different ideas for our live show throughout that period. So by the time we got to Sole DXB we had a concrete
idea of how the show was going to play out. A lot of focus was more on the visual aspect as well
Shébani: "Don't mess up, don't mess up, don't mess up!" haha! I was only clearing my mind, I wasn't thinking about anything else but THAT very moment itself, I said a little prayer, reminded myself why I'm doing this, and reassured myself that this is where I'm supposed to be.
BH: RAYAN,The way you arranged this full set was great. Take us through the process of creating Sole DXB set?
RAYAN: Sound wise, I was very adamant on creating a sonic atmosphere for the set. I wanted to translatea mood and scenery that you could hear with the interludes, effects, and breaks between songs. A lot of the songs were re-mixed for a live out-door setting so that some of the audio elements in the songs didn’t go missing with the size of the venue and the sound dispersing in an outdoor
environment. The set was essentially a 25 minute song-piece moving from motif to motif of how we wanted to tell Shebani’s story.
RAYAN: One of the song will be out on 21st December 2017, whilst all the rest will be 2018 releases which we’re super excited for!
**The song Rayan is talking about was just released today. You can hear it on Anghami below
BH: You performed @ the same stage where headliner Hip Hop legend Pusha T performed. What does that mean to you guys?
Shébani: The whole festival itself is something I can't really comprehend just yet, aside from sharing the stage with all these incredible artists, I personally focused more on the fact that I played in the same festival one of my favorite artists played at. It's an incredibly humbling and exciting experience, it really puts everything into perspective for you. I don't quite think about these details until a few days after when it really hits me, these moments push your career further into levels you never thought are even possible. I can't wait for what's to come next!
Rayan: It was an absolute privilege to share the stage with an icon such as Pusha T. He’s someone that a lot of artists and fans here look up to so it means a little more when you get to perform alongside artists of that caliber. It was also equally exciting to share the stage with artists like H.E.R and local artists that we believe have so much to offer music in our region. We felt we deserved that opportunity after a lot of the hard work we had put into the music through the tail end of 2016 and all of 2017. To play a show of that size was a small recognition and acknowledgement of our previous efforts.
Shébani: You were the ONLY female reppin' Arabia. How does that make you feel?
Shébani: This is why we do this, to inspire others to come out of their rooms and show the world what they're made of. I started off in my room singing to walls and camera lenses, I didn't know that I was going to be doing what I'm currently doing in my life, but I had a lot of support from friends and family, and I owe it all to them! This is what it means to me to be the only Arab female artist on that stage, it means that I have a responsibility to represent all Arab women around the world, and make it valid and valuable for them to be whoever they want to be
Shébani & RAYAN performing at Sole DXB 2017 - Pic Credit: Waleed Shah
RAYAN: Definitely one of my most enjoyable and memorable moments as producer and musician. The entire weekend was a testament of how much music culture we are developing in this part of the world. To be able to see local and international acts seamlessly share the stage is a moment I take so much pride from, as someone who is actively trying to improve, celebrate and endorse that artistic liberty.
Shébani: It was a mixture of all good, new and tough things! It was eye opening and a massive learning experience, but it was also fun, exciting and very new. I was very happy to be experiencing moments I had to learn from, meet new people, and share the nights with some of the most prestigious musicians and artists who flew across oceans!
Any Last words?
Shébani: Really excited for 2018, there's a lot to talk about and look forward to. No stopping now!
RAYAN: Sole DXB 2017, you guys were amazing. We can’t wait to come back. Stay tuned for 2018.
Shébani & RAYAN performing at Sole DXB 2017 - Pic Credit: Omar Tartoob
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