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Monday, 02 August 2021

Mido Zoheir, poet, lyricist for Egypt’s best-known independent musicians, dies at 47

Zoheir wrote lyrics for songs performed by Wust El-Balad, Black Theama, Maryam Saleh and Dina El-Wedidi, among others

Ati Metwaly , Sunday 26 Apr 2020
Mido Zoheir
Mido Zoheir
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Egypt’s well-known lyricist and poet Mido Zoheir (also spelled Mido Zohair) died in the morning hours of Sunday, 26 April.

The independent music scene took to social media, mourning the passing of an artist who was among the most important cultural players in the music field.

Born in 1974, Zoheir began writing for underground musicians before the 2011 revolution, often tackling issues close to the hearts of the younger generation.

Revolutionary at heart, in his poems Zoheir cherished but also questioned customs, traditions, concepts of freedom, and life in general.

It was the content of Zoheir’s lyrics — touching on the generation’s dreams and hopes —among reasons that attracted independent musicians to his poems.

Among the first musicians to cooperate with Zoheir were Maryam Saleh (since her Baraka band and then in many other projects) and Dina El-Wedidi, as well as band Black Theama.

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Black Theama used his lyrics in a large number of songs, including Kol Mara, Mokaeb Sokar, Ya Sadek, Ghawy Bany Adameen, Azraq, among others. Poem ‘Azraq’ were read by Ahmed Helmy in one of the scenes of Al-Gamaa television series.

“Mido was our close friend,” Zatona, percussionist of Black Theama, told Ahram Online. “He was with us since the beginnings of the band, since the track El-Magnoon. He is part of our musical development and of the whole scene.”

El-Wedidi cooperated with Zoheir on several songs from her 2014 album Tedawar W'tergaa (Turning Back), including the title song. Their cooperation extended to the Nile Project where El-Wedidi sang many compositions to Zoheir’s lyrics, such as Ya Ganouby.

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With El-Wedidi and Black Theama, Zoheir touched on a variety of Egypt’s cultural traditions, expressed in a deeply humane and emotional context, touching on pain, happiness and hope.

Maryam Saleh carried Zoheir’s words in many of her compositions, such as Toul El-Tareeq, Kashf Asary, and in her cooperation with Maurice Louca and Tamer Abu Ghazaleh where the lyricist provided words for Teskar Tebky, Lekhfa, among other compositions.

Zoheir also cooperated with Wust El-Balad, including the band’s well known song Aneqeni from their 2011 album Robabekya.

Zoheir also authored a number of books – such as Air Syringe – which topics and poems conveyed his revolutionary ideas.

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