BEIRUT: With their fun beats and diverse soundscapes, the young Lebanese Hip Hop artists Elie Hachem and Gregory Sayegh decided to combine their love for music and words to bring back LoughaRhythm.
Starting their friendship at an early age, the duo started their career in a rap group in 2013 called “Ill Madineh” which consisted of five young Beirut based rappers. After working together, the duo found their synergy and decided to go solo.
“We started a long time ago when we were kids. I didn’t even have a mustache when we started!” Sayegh told Annahar, “I met Elie at a thing which was going on in the Hip Hop community which was called “Rap Cypher”. We met there and I felt like we had similar styles and we agreed on music and writing. The story started there.”
The name “LoughaRhythm” comes from a clever wordplay by the duo which combines the two elements they love the most; “Lougha” which corresponds to the lyrics and their focus on the lyrical element as they rap about social, economic, and daily issues, and “Rhythm” which corresponds to the beat and music which the duo produce from A to Z.
Although the Hip Hop scene in Lebanon still remains underground, the duo explained why they chose to pursue the music. “We found this as our own way to be able to express ourselves” Sayegh added.
With two songs already released for LoughaRhythm, “Brase Mwadi3” (Topics in my head), and “Ta3a Nensa Mbareh” (Let’s forget yesterday), the duo has decided that it’s time to make a music comeback with a change in style and lyrics.
“We used to make music for fun, now it’s more serious for us to make music.” Hachem told Annahar, “The most obvious change is lyrical. Everything changed there with us, the messages that we used to rap about changed although we focus very thoroughly on wordplay, puns, and punchlines, whether in our name or the way we write.”
Through battle rapping and releasing songs on YouTube and social media, LoughaRhythm became a name to be reckoned with as the duo are the first rappers to battle as two people instead of the usual one on one or in groups.
Explaining how the dynamic of two battle rappers work, Sayegh broke down the secret to the dynamic: “We are used to the back and forth in our performances as we did that before at Radio Beirut. It would be sort of a rap battle, we would just put a beat and rap back and forth on different subjects.”
Being independent artists comes with numerous challenges, but the duo has been producing, writing, and releasing their own work since the beginning.
“What’s nice is that we are able to do whatever music we feel like doing, no one can tell us not to do that or not to say that. We can do whatever we want and that’s the most important thing for us. We have no restrictions, no limits.” Hachem added.
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