I spend most of my day studying the electrical properties of cardiac tissue. What does that mean? Our hearts are sophisticated pumps. To give you a rough idea; the heart contracts in the order of a 100 thousand times a day to deliver blood to every organ in the body and to itself. Each contraction is caused by an electric wave that propagates through the muscle. What we try to do is study what causes this incredible pump to stop functioning properly from an electrical point of view. This abnormality is referred to as Cardiac Arrhythmias.
So what about the music? I started my formal training in Tunis at the age of 13. I chose the oud inspired by my grandfather Thanoun Jarrah. After a short stay in Gaza, I moved with my family to Ramallah, were I met Khaled Jubran who shaped much of my music education. In Ramallah, I met Tamer Abu Ghazaleh, Palestinian composer and entrepreneur. We ended up founding "Jehar" in 2002, a series of shows experimenting with the reinterpretation of arabic and folk music. The project featured musicians from Egypt and Palestine.
My journey with engineering, began in the year 2000. What started as a reluctant journey to fulfill my parents desires, transformed into a passion for science and research. The journey led me to Washington DC, where I completed my PhD at GWU. For over 7 years in DC, I had the chance to meet people from all walks of life, for all colors and races. Also in DC, I met a beautiful community of Palestinians with whom I started the DC Palestinian Film and Arts Festival. Check out our website!
While tackling heart arrhythmias with the most inspiring and craziest scientists I know , I wrote and recorded my debut album Mars, back and forth.
Mars, was my search for home and for identity. A trip to a world without borders. Undefined by labels and boundaries. The god of war, that shaped my early years, from the mountains of Lebanon where I was born during the Israeli invasion, to the early years of the second intifada (uprising) in Ramallah. In 2011, through a grant from "Al mawred Al Thaqai", Mars was born. In an exceptional autumn week, DC hosted Kinan Azmeh from Syria on clarinet, old friend Nadim Khoury on buzuq, John Hadfield on percussion and Kris Funn on bass, and Ayman Mabrouk (a long and sad story and too unreal to tell here), while Ahmed Foula was hard at work on the cover and the booklet of this album.
I am now preparing for a second album entitled "Mosaic". The project features musicians from DC. The project is a mix of instrumental pieces and improvisations with local musicians, reinterpretations of old folk songs and a number of original tracks.