DAM - Palestinian Hip Hop Group
to Perform and Discuss their Work
Palestine’s first hip-hop crew, Da Arabian MC’s (DAM), will perform a concert, screen a documentary about the group, and participate in a discussion about their music on April 1 and 2 on the Princeton University campus. The concert will take place on Monday, April 1 at 8:00 p.m. in the Multipurpose Room of Frist Campus Center, with the screening and discussion following the next day, April 2, at 4:30 p.m. in the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater at 185 Nassau Street. The events are presented by the Lewis Center for the Arts’ Performance Central, the Edward W. Said Memorial Lecture Fund and the Princeton Committee on Palestine in collaboration with the the Davis International Center, the Program in Near Eastern Studies, the Persian Society of Princeton, the South Asian Students Association, the Muslim Students Association and Ellipses. All events are free and open to the public, however tickets are required for the concert.
DAM, known internationally as a leader among the Palestinian rap scene, is one of the first hip-hop groups to rap in Arabic. Brothers Tamer and Suhell Nafar and their friend, Mahmoud Jreri, started working together in the late 1990s after realizing that the reality of their hometown streets of Lod, a mixed Arab-Jewish town near Jerusalem, were not far removed from the streets they saw featured in Tupac videos. Inspired to tell their collective stories through hip-hop, the trio declares that the core of their message is about “protest, peace, existence before co-existence and straight up survival.” Interviewed recently by Arab News, Jreri notes DAM's ambition: “Sometimes you can’t change the world in a minute or with a song, but you can spark minds that will change the world and make people more aware of the problems we share and the reality that we live in.”
A unique fusion of east and west, DAM's music combines Arabic percussion rhythms, Middle Eastern melodies and urban hip hop. The group raps in both Arabic and English, as well as Hebrew.
The French newspaper Le Monde has identified the Palestinian group as “the spokesmen of a new generation.” DAM first became a household name in the Middle East in 2001 after releasing its breakthrough single, “Min Irhabi” (“Who’s the Terrorist?”), which reached the status of a cult anthem among Arab youth after receiving over a million downloads within a single month. The group went on to release its first album, Idhaa (Dedication) in 2006 after signing with British label Red Circle Music. In 2011, the critically-acclaimed trio released another popular single, “Risale min Zinzane” (“A Letter from the Cell”) in support of the thousands of prisoners living in Palestinian jails. DAM released its second international album, Debke on the Moon, in 2012 and is currently on tour in the U.S. celebrating its release.
DAM strives to communicate its message to wider audiences by sharing its music through various avenues. In 2003, the trio appeared in the award-winning documentary Channels of Rage alongside rapper Kobi Shimoni. Both Jackie Salloum's 2008 film Slingshot Hip Hop and Morgan Spurlock's documentary Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden? featured tracks from the group's 2006 album, Dedication. In addition, the popular track “Min Irhabi” has extended its reach beyond the original audience of Arab youth to include students at universities across the U.S. and Europe. Today, the members of DAM continue to live in their hometown of Lod, Israel, and work to provide the youth of their city and the neighboring communities with programs and opportunities they would not otherwise be able to access.
All DAM events are free, however the concert is ticketed. Tickets can be reserved at University Ticketing at the Frist Campus Center or by calling 609-258-9220; tickets will also be available at the door.
To learn more about the Performance Central Series and the more than 100 other events presented each year by the Lewis Center for the Arts visit: princeton.edu/arts.
Link to photo: https://lca.sharefile.com/d/s428104416a24524b
Photo caption: (from left) Suhell Nafar, Tamer Nafar and Mahmoud Jreri from the Palestinian hip-hop crew known as Da Arabian MC's (DAM)
Photo credit: Courtesy of DAM
Monday, April 1 at 8:00 p.m.
Frist Multipurpose Room
Screening & Discussion:
Tuesday, April 2 at 4:30 p.m.
James M. Stewart '32 Theater at 185 Nassau Street
Free and open to the public.
Tickets required for Concert;
Tickets available at the door
or call University Ticketing
In the News
Press Info [PDF]