Music of the United Arab Emirates

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The music of the United Arab Emirates stems from the Eastern Arabia music traditions. Distinctive dance songs from the area's fishermen are also well-known. Liwa (or leiwah / leywah) is a type of music and dance performed mainly in communities which contain descendants of Bantu peoples from the African Great Lakes region.

Performers in the country include Mohammed Al Muhairi (better known as Mehad Hamad), Ahlam Ali Al Shamsi, and Hussain Al Jasmi.

Underground music in the UAE[edit]

The UAE houses a lively underground music scene, consisting mostly of expatriates. Concentrated in Dubai, the majority of local artists play rock and metal music. Some bands also play alternative styles of music such as ska, punk, house and experimental sounds.

A cover band scene is prevalent in both Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Dubai's Blue Bar frequently hosts live jazz performances.

Local organizations have been key players in moving the music scene forward, in terms of organizing and promoting concerts and bands, as well as providing online discussion areas for local residents wishing to know more about upcoming events.

Yassin Alsalman, better known by his stage name The Narcicyst, was born in Dubai in 1982.

Canadian singer Karl Wolf lived in Dubai between the ages of three and seventeen, and has returned to perform in the UAE.

Notable bands[edit]

Below is an alphabetical list of UAE-based artists who have released original material commercially:

  • Abri - Albums: Sunchild (2008), Blank Notes (2009)[1]
  • Absolace - Albums: Resolve(d) (2010), Fractals (2012)[2]
  • Alison Andrews - Album: Love's a Cure (2011)[3]
  • Anuryzm - Album: Worm's Eye View (2011)[4]
  • Beat Antenna - EP: Half Now, Half Later (2009)[5]
  • Billy Bob's Blood Drenched Brew - Album: The Split (2012)[6]
  • Coat of Arms - Albums: This is Manslaughter (2011), Sun and Satellites (2013), DVD: Nobody Knows (2011)[7]
  • Dahab - Albums: Spirit of Sinai (2009), Qabeela'h (2011)[8]
  • Jonas Desai - EP: Get me Out (2008), album: A Weight Off my Mind (2008)[9]
  • Desert Heat - Album: When the Desert Speaks (2008)[10]
  • E.Y.E. - Albums: Empty Yard Experiment (2011), Kallisti (2014)[11]
  • Fatiniza - Albums: Confusion (2010), Nothing is Impossible (2012)[12]
  • The Flaming Trees - EP: Soldier (2009)[13]
  • Gandhi's Cookbook - EP: In the Cesspool of Culture (2008)[14]
  • Jennifer Gove - EP: This is my Dirt (2009)[15]
  • Ash Hamman - - Album: Ash Hamman (2013)[16]
  • Tim Hassall - Album: Oh Restless Heart (2010)[17]
  • Illmiyah - Album: Stereotyped (2012)[18]
  • Juliana Down - Albums: Cause and Affect (2006), Empires (2011)[19]
  • Malika - Albums: Tarabu (2005), Sand Star (2011)[20]
  • Moonshine - EP: Moonshine (2010)[21]
  • Kamal Musallam - Albums: On a Jordan River's Side (2003), Out of my City (2008), Lulu (2009), Songs for Seung-eun (2011)[22]
  • Naree - Albums: I'm no Fool (2004), Proud (2005), In This Life or the Next (2007), Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde (2009), Naree - The Soundtrack (Vol. 1) (2010)[23]
  • Nervecell - EP: Human Chaos (2004), Albums: Preaching Venom (2008), Psychogenocide (2011)[24]
  • Nightmare Overdose - EP: We're All Strangers (2014)[25]
  • Nikotin - EP: Short of Panodrama (2009), Album: Panodrama (2014)[26]
  • Obselion - EP: The Calm Fire (2012)[27]
  • Point of View - Album: Revolutionize the Revolutionary (2012)[28]
  • Riff Raff - Album: By the Seat of Our Pants (2012)[29]
  • Sandwash - Album: Master Blaster Hole (2010)[30]
  • Danny Shirran - Album: Long Time Comin' (2013)[31]
  • Sho? - EP: I Don't Wanna Go (2010)[32]
  • Vin Sinners - Album: An Element of Surprise (2011)[33]

See also[edit]