Aheb Aisht Al Huriya

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  • With an English translation to "I Love the Life of Freedom," this is an Egyptian civil rights song. The music was written in the 1930s by the Egyptian composer, Mohamed Abdel Wahab, and the words were later written by the Egyptian poet-laureate, Ahmed Shawki. The Arab American musician-come-political activist, Stephan Said, recorded the song on his sixth album, difrent. Said told us his father taught him the song.
  • "Aheb Aisht Al Huriya" is the lead single from Stephan Said's sixth album, difrent. The album was released on September 21st 2011 - the same day as the United Nations' International Day of Peace. The LP shares its name with Said's activism website, difrent.org, which describes itself as a "global broadcasting platform for music for social change, a one-stop where artists, activists, and organizations come together to advance local initiatives around the world on a constant basis through music and video releases." Said gave the song away as a free download to "all those who are non-violently working to build the international movement for a more just society."
  • Both the MP3 and official video of "Aheb Aisht Al Huriya" came complete with a spoken message from Stephan Said, during which he expressed hope in moving towards a free and more equal society, adding: "This is our moment, this is the moment in history when each of us must summon our highest, most poetic selves to courageously step forward into the brilliance of the next world, a world that is already in the making."
  • In the official video for the song, Said holds a notebook on which he has written the English translation of the lyrics. Throughout the video, Said flips between the notebook's pages, echoing Bob Dylan's iconic video, "Subterranean Homesick Blues."
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