I don’t think I’m being particularly controversial when I say that Egypt, more than most countries, is a a bit of a slave to fads. Earlier this year, Cairenes jumped on yet another bandwagon, as people with too much time on their hands across the world shook their arms and legs wildly on camera to Pharrell Williams’ painfully average hit, Happy.
Though the viral fad has, thankfully, died down, a group of Egyptian musicians have taken on the song and made it their own.
Ahmed Abou El Yazid - aka Zizo - and saxophonist, Nour Ashour - a regular at Cairo Jazz Club - have recorded a cover of the song, meshing he original lyrics with some of Arabic lyrics written by Ashour.
The cover has a slight twist, though, posing this question to Egypt: Are you really happy? Zizo answers with an emphatic yes, singing "Happiness is in the air, but we don’t see it//Tomorrow will be better and the best years are to come//Conditions make it hard to be happy//But I'm laughing, jumping, dancing and singing aloud."
Check out the video - it's a nice change to the doom and gloom that continues to infest local music.