HAIFA TO BERLIN
Emirates Woman|December 2019
Palestinian singer-songwriter Rasha Nahas is set to release her debut album early next year. She talks to Emirates Woman about music, performance and theatricality
Ian Ackerman

The thing that drives me as a songwriter is my emotions and thoughts,” says Palestinian singer-songwriter Rasha Nahas. “I’m a sensitive person and I feel that with music I digest and reflect what I’m going through.” Nahas, who has performed extensively across Europe, is a young musician to watch. A performance artist as well as a talented guitarist, her music blends classic rock, punk, folk and cabaret, with the ‘reckless echoes’ of free jazz thrown in for good measure. Now she is preparing to release her debut album, with singles and music videos being prepped for launch early next year.

“The main colour is rock,” says Nahas of her upcoming album, which has been largely financed via a crowdfunding campaign. “In addition, there is a lot of theatricality in the singing as well as in the songwriting. The album is also very personal and intimate and I think that this blurring between the theatricality and the more personal material is what’s interesting for me.” Currently living and working in Berlin, Nahas grew up in Haifa, the epicentre of the Palestinian underground music scene within the Green Line. The Guardian once described her as having “the theatricality of Weimar cabaret with added violins and rockabilly”, and her sound is sometimes grungy and intense. An intensity that has only been accentuated by her move to Berlin.

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