Poet and MC Farhood made Liverpool his home after fleeing Iran in 2011. The first few years fighting for his asylum here were incredibly challenging for the young artist, and he experienced hardship no young person ever should. His continued writing and creating were a path to connecting with and collaborating with Liverpool-based artists who were producing music and events of the same artistic and political direction. Farhood's lyrics have a strong foundation in traditional Persian and modern street languages. His first EP Tike Tike, produced in collaboration with Liverpool-based artists Kepla and Ling, speaks of the political situation in Iran and of the artist's personal experiences.
Shadia Mansour, also known as 'the first lady of Arabic hip hop', is a British-Palestinian singer and MC who sings and raps in Arabic and English. Much of her music focuses on Middle East politics.
Finally, we are joined by DAM (Da Arabian MCs). Heralded by French newspaper Le Monde as 'the spokesman of a new generation', DAM, the first Palestinian hip-hop crew and among the first to rap in Arabic, began working together in the late 1990s. Struck by the uncanny resemblance of the reality of the streets in a Tupac video to the streets in their own neighborhood of Lyd, Tamer Nafar, Suhell Nafar and Mahmoud Jreri were inspired to tell their stories through hip-hop. Ten years of performing all over the world has strengthened DAM’s commitment to continue living in their hometown of Lyd – fifteen minutes from Tel Aviv – working to provide the youth of the city and neighbouring communities with programs and opportunities that have otherwise been denied to Palestinian citizens of Israel. In addition, they have conducted workshops for young people from the West Bank to the US, Canada, and Europe and the group has taken on a fourth member, Maisa Daw.
DAM’s music is a unique fusion of east and west, combining Arabic percussion rhythms, Middle Eastern melodies, and hip-hop. Their work has been influenced by artists as varied as Ghassan Kanafani, Ahlam Mosteghanemi, Mahmoud Darwish, Naji al Ali, Tupac, Biggie, Public Enemy, MBS, K'naan, and Pharoahe Monch.
'Our Shared Future' is the theme of Refugee Week 2017, which is managed by Counterpoints Arts, an organisation which supports, produces and promotes art by and about migrants and refugees.
2pm – 2.30pm: Farhood
3pm – 3.45pm: Shadia Mansour
4.15pm – 5pm: DAM