You could say that Amr Diab had an early start in music. The Egyptian superstar sang the national anthem on the radio at the age of six – a performance that so impressed the Governor of Port Said that he gave him a guitar. He studied music in Cairo, and upon graduation in 1986, released a debut album.
Since that first album, he has remained a major player on the Egyptian music scene, and is known for his distinct style of blending Arabic and other Mediterranean styles like flamenco with Western pop rhythms to create a distinct and unique sound. This blend has been the key to his success, and is the reason why his most recent album, 2009’s Wayah, still managed to top the charts in the Arab world after 23 years of being active in the music scene. Amr Diab is the best selling Arabic artist of all time, and has won the World Music Award for Best-Selling Middle Eastern Artist in 1998, 2002, and 2007. He was also the first Egyptian singer to appear in a music video – a medium which he has been using since the early 1990s to reinforce his position as an innovation in the Egyptian music scene.
Amarain – Amr Diab
The above song, from the 1999 album of the same name, is regarded as one of Diab’s best. Here is the music video for 1996’s “Nour el Ain,” which was a huge hit not only in the Middle East, but worldwide: