Distinguished Iraqi singer Kathem El Saher is busy these days preparing for his new album, which will include many surprises, due to be released at the beginning of the summer season. One of the surprises of the album is a change in Kathem’s style of singing as he attributes a Lebanese accent for some of the songs.
According to the London based Elaph, the famous Arab star is also preparing to hold a concert at the Royal Albert Hall in the British Capital London on May 23, 2004. This is the second time for Kathem to hold a concert in the same place; the first one was back in 1997 alongside Tunisian singer Latifa.
Kathem’s hit “Hafiyat al-Kadamein” (Barefoot) is ranked first in the music show Juke Box on the British radio BBC. Kathem had previously talked on the same show about a future song entitled “If there is one pray to bring us together” that he will declare in the near future.
The BBC Radio 3 World Music Award for best singer in the Middle East and North Africa category was awarded to El Saher, and he is scheduled to receive his prize at a special event held especially for the occasion in England. The singer revealed that during the event he will sing a remix of his popular song “Baghdad and "Me and Laila".
El Saher has publicly announced that he never belonged to the regime of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein stressing that he had not been in Baghdad for over seven years, after being forbidden to enter due to orders given by Udai Hussein, son of Saddam. Kathem was banned by Udai due to the fact that he constantly refused to sing in private occasions for the ruling family.
Kathem revealed that the songs he had sung for Saddam were done only after he had received death threats from Udai and was blackmailed. He added that Udai had also banned all of his songs from broadcasting on Iraqi radio and television stations, making him an outcast. –Albawaba.com
© 2004 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )