The Free Music & Najib Alhoush - Free Music (Part 1) (LP)
Avid Habibi Funk listeners may be familiar with Libyan composer / producer Najib Alhoush, who’s track “Ya Aen Daly” - the Bee Gee’s “Stayin Alive” cover - was included in our second compilation. Upon further research we found that Najib was actually the singer and founder of The Free Music band alongside Fakhreddin, Salim Jibreel, Abdulrazzak ‘Kit-Kat’, Mukhtar Wanis and Mohameed Al Rakibi.
When we look for music that works under the umbrella of Habibi Funk, we often come across albums where bands experimented with influences from Soul, Jazz, Funk, Disco and more, usually on a single track or two but then they often go down to a different path for the rest of the album. This was not the case for The Free Music. All their albums are fully dedicated to their unique blend of Disco, Reggae and Funk and it feels that when we made the selection for this album, we could have chosen a completely different number of tracks and the album would have been equally strong.
The lead-off single is the stupendously groovy “Ana Qalbi Ehtar” out February 3rd along with LP pre-order to capitalize on Bandcamp Friday. From the outset, the rhythmic strumming of the funkified guitars give way to the galloping drums and bass, opening up to anthemic vocals and rounding out with a blistering guitar solo, a certified disco-funk classic through-and-through.
Second single, out February 17th is the disco slammer “Hawelt Nensa Ghalaak.” Guitars, harmonized horns, synths and bouncing bass and drums collide w/ spaced out vox to make the track a dancefloor sureshot for any party.
Third single is “Mathasebnish,” out March 3rd, a pure disco-funk slammer if there ever was one – with stabbing horns, funky bass riffs, a riding rhythm guitar and anthemic vocals, rounded out with stunning flute and guitar solos – the track will surely be on repeat along with the arrival of warmer weather.
Album focus track “Men Awel Marra” is another standout disco-infused tune, showcasing the immense creativity out of Najib and The Free Music. This past summer we finally had the opportunity to get together with Yousef Alhoush, Najib’s son, face-to-face at a coffee shop in Istanbul’s central Istiklal road together with our friend Anas El Horani. Yousef told us the whole story of how his father got into music, the start of the band and his father’s continued conflicts with the Gaddafi regime that probably kept his career from becoming even bigger.
Hawelt Nensa Ghalaak
Law Yom Saalak Had
Free Music I
Ana Qalbi Ehtar
Men Awel Marra
Free Music II
Al Qalb Mrayef
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