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Local artists find window into global music scene through online platforms - Jordan Times

Today, April 19, 2022
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By Joy Mazahreh - Apr 17,2022 - Last updated at Apr 17,2022
Nasir Al Bashir, a Jordanian music producer, in his studio (Photo courtesy of Echolibrium)
AMMAN — During the pandemic, the music industry in the Kingdom and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has witnessed the rise of a new generation of independent artists, as online streaming and social media platforms have introduced local musicians to a global audience. 
Nasir Al Bashir, a Jordanian music producer, saw the potential of the Jordanian music industry and started working with up-and-coming artists at the start of the pandemic, in March 2020.
“It has been a long road,” said Bashir in a recent interview with The Jordan Times. “I have been in this field for seven years, playing musical instruments and performing on stage, but only started producing Jordanian music two years ago,” he noted. 
Bashir developed “Echolibrium”, an international artist development network that seeks to provide artists in the MENA region with access to services to help them create, release and market music, he noted. 
“Echolibrium connects artists with music producers, song writers, film directors, and marketing personnel in order to empower them within the burgeoning MENA industry and help them execute the process in a focused manner,” he continued.
Echolibrium has the potential to become “a hub” for independent music professionals, he told The Jordan Times. 
Developing music scene 
Before COVID, music production largely relied on live performances, rather than digital streaming, Bashir added. 
He said that, “Social media has allowed artists in Jordan to become regionally and globally recognised through short excerpts”.
“I’ve been lucky enough to work with artists both within the region and around the globe, but I’m also very interested in aiding local Jordanian talent to cement their presence within the regional music industry,” said Al Bashir, highlighting that Jordan has a lot to offer to the global music scene. 
“We’ve witnessed a rise in the number of Jordanian artists over the last few years and are eager to continue that process, helping create a larger Jordanian presence in Arab music,” he said. 
Zeyne, a Jordanian singer and songwriter who works alongside Bashir, started releasing her original material on online platforms a year ago.
“When it comes to independent music creation, the last few years have witnessed a lot of new artists and genres emerging from Jordan, creating a community of their own,” Zeyne told The Jordan Times in a recent interview. 
“I am also extremely delighted to see new female artists rise up in Jordan and have a voice,” she continued. 
Industry challenges 
However, there are still many challenges facing the industry. “Music production is a long process that needs a lot of people to write songs, record the music, design costumes, work in public relations, and marketing, and so on,” Bashir said. 
He noted that the “biggest difficulty” is financing and “finding professionals who can put the project together”, calling for more musical classes in schools. 
“Jordanian artists today are creating high-quality music and attracting major recording labels to the Kingdom,” added Zayne. 
The globally acclaimed Jordanian singer and songwriter Issam Najjar added in recent interview with The Jordan Times that “I want artists to support each other without competition. I am sure that this will change our music as we develop it into something new.” 
“We are sending a very powerful message to all Jordanians; we can make our dreams come true. The decision to invest talent in the creative industry is worthwhile,” said Bashir.
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