Nawal Al Zoghbi

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Nawal Al Zoghbi
Native name نوال الزغبي
Birth name Nawal George Al Zoghbi
Born (1972-06-29) June 29, 1972 (age 42)
Byblos, Lebanon
Genres Arabic music, pop music, pop folk
Occupation(s) Singer
Years active 1988–present
Labels Relax In (1992—1993) – (1997—1999)
Music Box International (1994—1996)
Rotana (1999—2002) (2007—2009)
Alam elPhan(2002—2007)
Melody Music (2009—)
Website nawalalzoghbi.net

Nawal Al Zoghbi born 29 June 1964 (Jal El-Dib, Lebanon) is a Lebanese pop vocalist. Performing in Arabic, she has a fan base throughout the Arab world has a following amongst Arab expatriates in North America and Europe. Her musical career has spanned over 20 years.

She achieved popularity first by singing traditional Arabic music with a pop sensibility, and later singing in the Gulf dialect, and also embracing newer trends in Arabian music. She capitalised on the popularity of music videos in Arab pop music in the '90s, which propelled her to local stardom in the Arab world. [1]

Biography[edit]

Nawal George Al Zoghbi is a Lebanese singer. Born to a Maronite Catholic family in the coastal small town of Jal El-Dib, she holds Canadian citizenship. Al Zoghbi is the oldest born among three brothers and one sister.[2] Al Zoghbi began singing at an early age, despite familial opposition to the lifestyle of a musician. Members of her family changed their minds when they realized she was serious in her ambitions. In 1988 she participated in the Lebanese talent show Studio El Fan. In 1990 she married Lebanese music manager Elie Deeb and went on to have three children with him. The couple legally separated in 2008 and Al Zoghbi waited three years for the Maronite Catholic Church to recognize their divorce.[3][4][5][6] In late 2009, Al Zoghbi was granted custody of her three children[7][8] and in March 2011, her divorce was officially legalized.[9]

Recording career[edit]

1988–1992: Rise to fame[edit]

In 1988, Nawal participated in the talent show Studio El Fan in which she demonstrated a great voice singing "Tarab" songs especially songs of her muse and diva Warda and was noticed by then director of the show "Simon El Asmar". However, Nawal decided to withdraw from the talent show.

1994–2002: Stardom and controversy[edit]

Nawal became the number one female star of the nineties,[10] with revolutionary video clips, looks and style.

Starting with the year 1994 and until 2002, Nawal released an album almost every year reigning as the number one female pop star of the Arab world for 8 consecutive years. Each year between 1994 and 2002 had at least one huge hit by Nawal. After her breakthrough hits "Ayza El Radd" in 1994 and "Balaee Fi Zamany" in 1995, Nawal sang in 1996 a very famous duet with Lebanese singer Wael Kfoury called "Min Habibi Ana",[10] this duo became the song of the year and the duo of the decade.

In 1998, Nawal Al-Zoghbi released her biggest selling album "Mandam aleik" followed by the album Maloum in 1999.

2004–2006: New success with "Eineik Kaddabeen" & "Yama Alou"[edit]

After a two-year break, her next album, "Eineik Kaddabeen", was released in the summer of 2004. This album was accompanied by two singles: "Eineik Kaddabeen" and "Bi'einek". "Bi'einek" video was directed by Nadine Labaki and featured Nawal dancing and singing on a fantasy stage among her fans. The video and the song became hugely popular proving the continuing success of the "Golden Star" as the fans and media named Nawal. Immediately after promoting that album, Nawal began work on her next project "Yama Alou" while releasing internationally a compilation album of her Greatest Hits to date through the EMI Music Distribution label on the 24th of November 2005.

She released the first single from her forthcoming album "Rouhi Ya Rouhi", in August 2005 marking the end of her 5-year contract with Pepsi as she advertised the brand for the last time in this song's video clip. The next single released from Yama Alou was "Shou Akhbarak" in February 2006 which was a big hit in Lebanon. Yama Alou was intended to be released throughout the Middle East on 17 July 2006, however, due to the Israeli attacks on Lebanon, its release was postponed. It was then released on 26 July 2006 in Egypt and Saudi Arabia. In the following weeks, the album was made available in other countries around the Middle East and was finally released in Lebanon on 14 September 2006, once the war was over.[11]

2007-2008: The Face of LG mobile & "Khalas Sameht"[edit]

On the 23rd of March 2007, it was announced that Nawal al Zoghbi would be producing her next album with the production company Rotana. Nawal officially joined Rotana at a press conference at the Movenpick in Beirut on the 28th of March, 2007. At a press conference held by LG Global at Dusit Dubai on 25 April 2007, it was announced that Nawal Al Zoghbi will be the face to advertise LG cellular phones which the company will put out in 2007–2008 in the Middle East. The conference was attended by a large crowd from various media, which exceeded a variety of over 100 means of information between written, visual and audible.[12] On 12 June 2007 Nawal released the music video of her song, "Aghla El Habayib" from her album "Yama Alou" which was a continuation to the song "Shou Akhbarak" from the same album and in which she promoted the new LG mobile.[13] On 8 August 2007, Al Zoghbi notably returned to the Carthage Festival after an eight-year absence.

"Khalas Sameht" was released on 22 January 2008 in Nawal's native Lebanon. It was released internationally the next day. It reached # 1 on the Lebanese charts the first day, and sold extremely well the first week.[14] The first music video from the new album, titled Albi Esalou, was first shown on TV channels on 5 February 2008. The album was then officially launched at a press conference in Cairo, Egypt on 12 February 2008 while staying on the top of the Egyptian charts for almost 3 months. "Leih Moushtalak" was the second music video for "Khalas Sameht", it was released on 25 July 2008 and features Nawal promoting yet another Brand, Classy Lenses. No further releases came from this album although many songs from the album deserved to be released as singles and filmed as video clips.

2009–2010: New Management & release of 3 singles[edit]

Plagued by her divorce and in search of new management, Nawal went through the most difficult phase of her life both in her personal and her professional life. She started to work on her new album secretly while staying in the lights through the release of singles only.

On 29 May 2009, Nawal released the single, Mona Ainah, which is in the Khaliji dialect. It began airing on radio stations in the Middle East, and was performed first time on the TV Show Star Academy 6, on the same day of release. After much problems with Rotana not wanting to air it, Mona Ainah was then released by Melody in October 2009, as a music video directed by Yehya Saade. Al Zoghbi spent her own money to make the video.[7]

Nawal left Rotana in October 2009 and signed on with Melody who went on to produce her next album, while her management was now taken care of by Pascal Mghames. On Mother's day of 2010 Nawal released "Faw2 Jrouhi" which was considered as a very touching song that related to nawal's own life with her kids and ex-husband. The song spread so fast and was literally the talk of people and the press. Also during the summer of 2010, Nawal released "Amanah" as a single with a Live video which was a moderate hit throughout the summer.

2011–2012: Come Back to the top with "Ma'rafsh Leh"[edit]

In 2011, Nawal's 13th album Ma'rafsh Leh was released to positive reviews in February and was considered her come back album after 3 years without album releases. Three months later, Nawal shot "Alf w miye" which was the song of the year staying 16 weeks in the number one position on Lebanese and Arab radio stations as the video of the song had more than six million viewers on YouTube in just 5 months.

Later that year Nawal performed in many countries around the Arab world such as Tunis, Algeria, Dubai, Lebanon, Qatar among others and most of her concerts were broadcast on TV. In late December 2011, Nawal released her second music video from the album which is the title song "Ma'rafsh Leih" scoring yet another huge hit, while the video showed Nawal once more at the top of her game and as glamorous as ever. Other Songs in the albums that were not shot as video clips still gained a lot of success and were played heavily on Radio stations such as "Ha2oulak Eih" and "Hona El Qahera". In 2012, Nawal released a live version of the song "Andak", still from the same album, and the video was taken from a live performance at Arab Idol and proved to be a fan favorite.

Nawal's Album "Ma'rafsh Leih" and her Smash Hit Song "Alf W Miye" both got major awards in Lebanon for best album and best song of the year respectively and are considered a big return to popularity for Nawal since the album stayed more than 4 months in the number 1 spot of Virgin mega-stores Physical Album charts in Lebanon, Egypt and UAE.

As a result of this huge success, Nawal was crowned by the Murex D'or Awards in 2012 as the "Best Lebanese Female singer of the year".[15]

2013: Single Releases[edit]

Nawal released her single "Gharibi Hal Denyi" on TV and radios at the same time on 13 February 2013. The video for this single debuted on her official YouTube channel and had more than 1 million viewers in just 2 weeks.[16] The song became the number one song in the Official Lebanese top 20 charts [17] on the 3 March 2013, proving one more time the popularity and ongoing success of the Golden Star.

Nawal released her first Iraqi song "Ghazilni" in May 2013 with a TV performance on the "Arab Idol" prime. The song was well received by fans and music critics and managed to enter the top 10 of most airplay charts in the Arab world. Ghazilni peaked at number 7 in the Official Lebanese top 20 charts on 9 June 2013.[17]

Nawal ended the year 2013 on a high note by winning the coveted awards "Best Lebanese Singer" and "Best Song" and "Best Video Clip" for her single "Gharibi Hal Denyi" at the 2013 "OTV Awards". The ceremony was held in Beirut for the first time this year, and organized by OTV Network, a local Lebanese TV Channel and the results were based on the public's vote.[18][19][20]

International Advertising Campaigns[edit]

Pepsi[edit]

Nawal Al Zoghbi was the first Middle Eastern artist to ever be in an advertising campaign. In 2000 Al Zoghbi signed a 5-year contract with international company Pepsi, she made various television ads for the drink using her songs which led to her success, becoming the best selling artist in the Middle East.

LG[edit]

Nawal was the face of the "LG SHINE" mobile in the Middle East in 2007. Nawal appeared with the phone in her music video "Aghla el habayeb" from "Yama Alou" album.

Classy Lenses[edit]

Nawal advertised for the brand Classy Lenses and she appeared in them in her music video for " Leh Moushtakalak" 2008 from "Khalas Sameht" album.

Bonja Bags[edit]

In summer 2013, Nawal became the face of Bonja Bags with huge billboard advertisements.[21]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Music videos[edit]

Nawal Al Zoghbi is a music video revolutionist in the Arab World. She was one of the first female artists in the region to make music videos. All of Nawal's videos had to be completely original beginning with a fresh theme, a new look (hair, make up, clothes etc.) and filmed with the highest quality film making equipment possible at that time.

Year Title Album Language/Dialect
1990 Jayi Jayshak Lebanese Arabic
1994 Ayza El Radd Ayza El Radd Egyptian Arabic
1995 Balaee Fi Zamany Balaee Fi Zamany Egyptian Arabic
1995 Wala Bihemini Balaee Fi Zamany Egyptian Arabic
1996 Meen Habibi Ana Lebanese Arabic
1997 Habeit Ya Leil Habeit Ya Leil Egyptian Arabic
1997 Noss El Alb Habeit Ya Leil Lebanese Arabic
1997 Gharib Al Raai Habeit Ya Leil Khaleeji Arabic
1998 Mandam Aleik Mandam Aleik Lebanese Arabic
1998 Galbi Daq Mandam Aleik Lebanese Arabic
1998 Ala Bali Mandam Aleik Lebanese Arabic
1999 Dalouna Maloum Lebanese Arabic
1999 Maloum Maloum Lebanese Arabic
1999 Tia Maloum Lebanese Arabic
2000 El Layali El Layali Egyptian Arabic
2001 Tool Omri Tool Omri Egyptian Arabic
2001 Haseb Nafsak Tool Omri Lebanese Arabic
2002 Elli Tmaneito Elli Tmaneito Egyptian Arabic
2003 Bilbaklak Elli Tmaneito Lebanese Arabic
2004 Bieinak Eineik Kaddabeen Egyptian Arabic
2004 Eineik Kaddabeen Eineik Kaddabeen Egyptian Arabic
2005 Rouhi Ya Rouhi Yama Alou Egyptian Arabic
2006 Shou Akhbarak Yama Alou Lebanese Arabic
2006 Yama Alou Yama Alou Egyptian Arabic
2006 Adi Yama Alou Khaleeji Arabic
2007 Aghla el Habayib Yama Alou Lebanese Arabic
2008 Albi Isa'lo Khalas Sameht Lebanese Arabic
2008 Leih Moushtalak Khalas Sameht Egyptian Arabic
2009 Mona Ainah Ma'rafsh Leh Khaleeji Arabic
2011 Alf We Miyi Ma'rafsh Leh Lebanese Arabic
2011 Ma'rafsh Le Ma'rafsh Leh Egyptian Arabic
2013 Gharibi Hal Denyi Lebanese Arabic

Awards[edit]

1997[edit]

  • "Lions" Award for the best singer in Lebanon & Jordan[22]
  • "Best Female Singer" in Lebanon[22]
  • "Best Female Singer" in Arabic World

1998[edit]

  • "Best Singer" in the UAE[22]

1999[edit]

  • "First Arabic Singer"[22]
  • Best Female (Jordan)
  • Best Female (Lebanon)
  • Best Female (Egypt)
  • Artist of the Year

2000[edit]

  • Best Lebanese Singer[22]
  • Best Arabic Singer (Egypt)[22]

2002[edit]

  • Best Album - Dubai
  • Best Singer - Egypt

2004[edit]

  • Murex D'or Award: Best Female Lebanese Singer of the year[10]
  • Arab Music Awards: Best Female Singer[22]
  • Arab Music Awards: Overall Best Song[22]
  • Best Arabic Singer (Egypt)[22]
  • Best Album (Lebanon)[22]
  • Best Lebanese Singer

2005[edit]

  • Best Arabic Singer (Egypt)[22]

2006[edit]

  • Best Arabic Singer (T-A-C)
  • Album of The Year "Yama Alou" (T-A-C)
  • Song of the Year "Yama Alou" (T-A-C)
  • Clip of the Year "Yama Alou" (T-A-C)
  • Best Dancing Song of the Year "Yama Alou" (T-A-C)
  • Best Album "Yama Alou" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Song "Yama Alou" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Video "Yama Alou" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Dance Song "Yama Alou" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Entertainer Of The Week- 10 Times (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Entertainer Of The Year (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Fans for a singer (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Arabian Artist (Arabian Awards)
  • Best Female Singer award by AUST (Lebanon)[22]

2007[edit]

  • Best Arabic Singer (T-A-C)
  • Song of the Year "Aghla El Habayeb" (T-A-C)
  • Clip of the Year "Aghla El Habayeb" (T-A-C)
  • Best Dancing Song of the Year "Adi" (T-A-C)
  • Best Song "Aghla El Habayeb " (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Video "Aghla El Habayeb" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Dance Song "Adi" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Lebanese Song "Aghla El Habayeb (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Khaliji Song for 'Adi' (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Entertainer Of The Year (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Fans for a singer (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Fan Group (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Website (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Fashion Idol (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Concert "Cartage" (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Artist In A TV Show appearance for Kanat Khamas Noujoum
  • Voting Star Winner (Lebanon Entertainment—LE)
  • Best Arabian Artist (Arabian Awards)
  • Artist of the Year (JE Awards)
  • Gold Dulex Album (JE Awards)
  • Favorite Female Artist (JE Awards)
  • Best Dressed Artist (JE Awards)
  • Most Famous in America (JE Awards)
  • Most Likely to Have the Best 2008 (JE Awards)
  • Best Album of The Year "Yama Alou" (JE Awards)
  • Best Khaliji Song for "Adi" (JE Awards)
  • Video of the Year "Aghla El Habayeb" (JE Awards)
  • Arab Hottie (JE Awards)

2008[edit]

  • Leih Moshta2alak - Best Song - Murex D'or
  • Best Song - Leih Moshta2alak MEMA

2009[edit]

  • Most Successful Artist- Rotana (The Manager)
  • Honored in Malaysia
  • Ranked 5th on the list of Sexiest and Most Desirable Arab Women in 2009[10]

2011[edit]

  • Platinum Sales Album Of The Year - Virgin
  • First Candidate Album for The Arabic World Music Awards Prize

2012[edit]

  • Best Lebanese Female singer of the year (Murex D'or)[15]

2013[edit]

  • Best Lebanese singer (OTV Awards 2013)[23]
  • Best Song and Video Clip for "Gharibi Hal Dinyi" (OTV Awards 2013)[23]

References[edit]

External links[edit]