One of the great things about music is the way it can unite people from all over the world. It has often been said to be a universal language. At Headliner, we support indie artists of all kinds, from all over the world. In the past few months, we’ve come to know and dig Sham MCs, a Syrian rap group who gets the DIY indie grind, the importance of fan engagement and promotes positivity and consciousness among diverse people through their unique mix of Middle Eastern sounds and Hip Hop. They are walking their talk; in their own words: “Headliner fm taught me, Don’t live to survive, live to be worldwide.”
The Sham MCs would be taking the Syrian hip-hop scene by storm — if they weren’t creating the genre as they go.
The group is all about crossing barriers — rapping in both English and Arabic and mixing hip-hop with the sounds of traditional Arabic music, while avoiding the lyrical clichés of both genres.
The nine-member crew is a mix of Syrian Christians, Muslims and followers of new age spirituality. They’re taking advantage of more accessible recording technology, and the social media tools that have fueled uprisings in other Middle Eastern countries, to spread their music to a Syrian audience they say is hungry for hip-hop.
MC Mic Son, who learned English from an online Ebonics course, took us into the studio during a recording session for the Sham MC’s second album.