The music spans a wide arc across the Arab world from Lebanon, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to Morocco, bringing familiar styles from the various Arabic nations together into a pan-Arabic synthesis, along with rock and funk bass and jazzy lines from sax, trumpet and the quarter tone accordion.
This World Music album puts together the best of dance music, using music from as far a field as Morocco and Lebanon, Egypt and Kuwait, Saudi Arabia etc.
"In this album a dream has come true, the uniting of the Arab world. The word RAÏ means "opinion". It is a form of music that expresses the feelings of the youth, especially when society forbids voicing such emotions in "normal" day to day life.
RAÏ came out of Algeria, but nevertheless the concept holds true throughout the Middle East. The idea behind EGYPTIAN RAÏ is to use different types of sounds, rhythms, songs and feel, all from the Arab world.
It is my wish that anyone who listens to this album may get an eagle's eye view over the Arab world. Looking down on it from great heights, one realizes that it is a world in its own right. It is at its best when it communicates with its own peoples as well as with other members of our Earth." - Hossam Ramzy.
Hossam Ramzy: Born in Cairo, Hossam's musical career began at the age of three when he was given his first drum, an Egyptian tabla. Hossam's passion and talent for percussion was furthered with the help of leading Cairo teachers and a move to Saudi Arabia and contact with Bedouin tribes gave him a rich insight into the cultural origins of Middle Eastern music. After a move to England and success as a jazz drummer Hossam turned full circle, back to the thrilling rhythms of the Middle East.
Hossam's exciting percussion soon caught the imagination of the likes of Peter Gabriel, Robert Plant and Jimmy Page (former Led Zeppelin) and other leading world artists, such as: Yesim Salkim, Celick Erici, Cheb Khaled, Tarkan, Rachid Taha, Faudel, the Gypsy Kings… with whom he collaborated and whose albums he enriched with his percussion and arrangements.
Hossam has released 20 albums of Egyptian dance music for ARC Music, and in November 2001, at the label's 25th Anniversary, he was awarded a special Platinum disc for being their top selling artist, with over 200,000 sales to date.
His extensive discography includes: Afro-Celt Sound System, Marc Almond, Joan Armatrading, Ash, Claudio Baglioni, Big Country, Bond, Chick Corea, Pino Daniele, Anne Dudley, E.L.O., Celick Erici, Faudel, Peter Gabriel, Boy George, Gypsy Kings, Deborah Harry, Greg Hunter, Jay-Z, Kamal Kaçet, Alexandros Karozas, Cheb Khaled, Donal Lunny, Mathilda May, Loreena McKenitt, Maryam Mursal, Luciano Pavarotti, Robert Plant and Jimmy Page, Procol Harum, Rolling Stones, Rachid Taha, Tarkan, Barbara Thompson, Mari Wilson and Paul Young.
Film Soundtracks: The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Last Temptation of Christ, The Saint, Stargate, Stealing Beauty, Wings of a Dove.
1. GANI LASMAR (Ittab, arr. Hossam Ramzy) - 6:30
2. OTHRAK MA-AK OTHRAK (Abdullah Royshid, arr. Hossam Ramzy) - 7:10
3. EL-HAWZI (Hossam Ramzy) - 4:17
4. EL ATABA GAZAZ (Hossam Ramzy) - 6:11
5. WAH WAH (Walid Tawfiq) - 2:59
6. EDDALLA YA ARIS (Hossam Ramzy) - 7:13
7. MAWWAL EL-OSHAA (Hossam Ramzy) - 6:07
8. THE WORLD IS MY OYSTER (Hossam Ramzy) - 3:30
9. THE STAR COLLECTOR (Hossam Ramzy / Michael England) - 3:44