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Thekra in 2003, a few weeks before her death photographed by Miki
|Birth name||Thekra Mohammed Abdullah Al Dali|
September 16, 1966|
Oued Ellil, Tunisia
|Died||November 28, 2003
|Genres||Arab pop music, Arab Tarab, Arabic music, Arabesque music, Middle Eastern music|
|Labels||Rotana, EMI, Mega Star, Golden Cassette|
Thekra Mohammed Abdullah ed Dali (Tunisian Arabic: ذكرى محمد عبدالله الدالي; September 16, 1966 – November 28, 2003), better known as Thekra (Tunisian Arabic: ذكرى also spelled Thikra, Zekra or Zikra) was a Tunisian singer. The word "Thekra" is Arabic for a memory or memorial.
Thekra started performing at school. In 1980, she performed on the TV show "Fan Wa Mawahib" (Arabic: فن و مواهب), after which she joined the show's chorus. In 1983, her first recording was made, of a song composed by Abdul Hameed Khareef. In the same year, she performed at the Carthage festival.
Later she joined the vocal group section of the Tunisian Radio and TV Establishment's national band. There, she met Abdul Rahman Al Ayyadi, who composed many of her later songs. Thekra became known for her powerful voice and her ability to perform many kinds of Arabic music genres, including Qasa'ed, Muwashshah and Taarab songs.
During the 10 years before moving to Egypt, she released 30 songs in Tunisia. 28 of them were composed by Abdulrahman Al Ayyadi. Some of her successful singles in Tunisia included:
- "Liman Ya Hawa Satakoon Hayati Wa Kaifa Sa'Arifo Ma Howa Aati?" (Arabic script: لمن يا هوى ستكون حياتي وكيف سأعرف ما هو آتي?) - To whom does my life belong and how should I know how it will end up?
- "Habeebi Tammin Fo'adi" (Arabic script: حبيبي طمن فؤادي) - My beloved, comfort my heart
- "Ela Hadhn Ommi Yahin Fo'adi" (Arabic script: الى حضن امي يحن فؤادي) - My heart misses my mother's hug
- "Wadda'at Roohi Ma'ah Min Youm Ma Wadda'ani" (Arabic script: ودعت روحي معاه من يوم ما ودعني) - I said good bye to my soul which is gone with him since the day he said good bye to me
In 1990, she had an argument with Abdulrahman Al Ayyadi, who was her fiancé at the time, because he did not want any other person to compose for her. She left and joined a new group, Zakharif Arabiya (Arabic script: زخارف عربية).
She stayed for a while in Libya and released many songs written and composed by Libyan poets and composers including Mohammed Hassan, Ali Al Kailani, Abdullah Al Mansoor and Salman Al-Tarhooni. Her last album released in Libya was "Nafsi Azeeza", written by the poet Al-Tarhooni, which won best performance and lyrics in the Sharm el-Sheikh festival in Egypt.
After her career in Libya, she returned to Tunisia for a time, but then moved to Egypt. In Egypt, she met the musician Hani Mihanna who produced two of her albums. Wehyati Andak in 1995 was successful in the Arab world: until then she was known in the West side of the Arab world, but after that album she became widely known all over the Arab world. Mihnna also produced her second album, As'har Ma'ah Sertak, in 1997.
A few months later in 1997 she released Al Asami with a different producer and in 2000 Yana. Her last album in Egypt was Youm Aleek, released in 2003, only three days before her murder.
Her most successful singles performed in Egyptian Arabic were:
- "Wehyati Andak" (Arabic script: و حياتي عندك).
- "Mish Kol Hob" (Arabic script: مش كل حب).
- "Youm Aleek" (Arabic script: يوم عليك).
- "Bahlam Beloqak" (Arabic script: بحلم بلقاك).
- "Al Asami" (Arabic script: الاسامي).
- "Yana" (Arabic script: يانا).
- "Ya Azeez Aini" (Arabic script: يا عزيز عيني).
- "Law Ya Habeebi" (Arabic script: لو يا حبيبي).
- "Ya Khofi" (Arabic script: يا خوفي).
GCC and Gulf region
Thekra performed many songs and album in different Arab dialects including Gulf Arabic, also known as "Khaleeji".
She released many Khaleeji albums and they are:
- Thekra (1998).
- Thekra 2 (2002).
- Thekra 3 (2003).
- Wish Maseeri (2003)
- Wa Tabqa Thekra (2004) released after her death
- Aghani A'ajabatni (2004) released after her death
She also performed duets with several Khaleeji singers, including with Abo Bakir Salim in the song "Mishghil Al Tafkeer", and a duet with Mohammed Abdo in 2003. She was going to perform a duet with Abdullah Al Rowaished but was killed before it could be recorded.
Her most successful singles in Gulf Arabic were:
- "Elain El Youm" (Arabic script: الين اليوم).
- "Wainik Enta" (Arabic script: وينك انت).
- "Ma Feeni Shai" (Arabic script: ما فيني شي).
- "Ahibbik Moot" (Arabic script: احبك موت).
- "Ghayib" (Arabic script: غايب).
- "Al Jarh" (Arabic script: الجرح).
- "Qalaha" (Arabic script: قالها).
- "Hatha Ana" (Arabic script: هذا انا).
- "Al Mesafir" (Arabic script: المسافر).
On Friday November 28, 2003, she was murdered by her Egyptian husband, businessman Aiman Al Swaidi, who shot her four times in their home in Cairo. Aiman had also shot her secretary, business manager and then committed suicide.
After her death, many celebrities from the Arab world flew to Tunisia and Egypt to attend her funeral. Singers who performed Thekra's songs in their concerts included Asalah who performed "Elain Al Youm", Sherine who performed "Mish Kol Hob", Ghada Rajab who performed "Al Asami", Elissa who performed "Bahlam Beloqak", and Samira Said who performed "Alasami".
Latifa did not perform any of Thekra's songs, but instead recorded a Tunisian folk song called "Fi Al Ghorba" and dedicated it to her; she also dedicated her Murex d'Or award for best female singer in 2003 to her, and asked them to play a tribute to Thekra rather than about her.
- "Al Hilm Al Arabi" FEAT. others (Arabic script: الحلم العربي).
- "Ommahu" (English: Oh Mam). A trio with Ali Al Hajjar & Moniem. (Arabic Script: أماه)
- "Nihlam Eih?" A duet FEAT. Angham (Arabic script: نحلم إيه؟).
- "Hilmina Al Wardi" A duet FEAT. Mohammed Abdo (Arabic script: حلمنا الوردي).
- "Ya Hajiri" (Arabic script: يا هاجري).
- "Al Asmaraniya" (Arabic script: الاسمرانيه).
- "Baghdad La Tata'allami" FEAT. others (Arabic script: بغداد لا تتألمي).
- "Ya Khoofi" (Arabic script:يا خوفي).
- "Wehyati Andak" (Arabic script:و حياتي عندك).
- "Al Asami" (Arabic script:الأسامي).
- "Al Hilam Al Arabi" (with other Arab singers) (Arabic script:الحلم العربي).
- "Kol Elli Lamooni" (Arabic script:كل اللي لاموني).
- "Allah Ghalib" (Arabic script:الله غالب).
- "Qalaha" (Arabic script:قالها).
- "Elain El Youm" (Arabic script:الين اليوم).
- "Al Jarh" (Arabic script:الجرح).
- "Atfaal" (Arabic script:أطفال).
- "Wala Arif" (A duet FEAT. Ehab Tawfiq) (Arabic script:ولا عارف).
- "Nihlam Eih?" (A duet FEAT. Angham) (Arabic script:نحلم ايه؟).
- "Youm Aleek" (2003) (Arabic script:يوم عليك).
- "Bahlam Beloqak" (Arabic script:بحلم بلقاك) She shot parts of it before her death but the video was never completed so the idea was changed, it was montaged to make her appear as a ghost.
- "Law Ya Habeebi" (Arabic script:لو يا حبيبي) She shot parts of the clip mentioned above "Bahlam Beloqak" before her death but the video was never completed so the idea was changed, it was montaged to make her appear as a ghost.