Indepent Spotlight: Marwan Pablo

MarwanMarwan Ahmed Metawea, known by his stage name Marwan Pablo and

previously known as Dama, is an Egyptian rapper, performer, songwriter and record producer

from Alexandria, Egypt. Being referred to by the VICE Media and himself as “Egypt’s Godfather

of Trap”, Pablo is considered one of the most important voices of the new generation of

trap/hip-hop musical landscape in Egypt. He is most known for his hits ‘Free’, ‘Ghaba’, ‘El

Gemeza’ and ‘Sindbad’. Influenced by the emerging electronic music in Egypt, Pablo and other

trap musicians of his age are aiming to redefine the popularity of New School Hip Hop and Trap

music in Egypt, taking it from underground into mainstream.

A little before the covid outbreak on February 14th 2020, Pablo announced that, for

personal and religious reasons, he will no longer be making music. Shortly after, he deleted

everything on both his Instagram account and Youtube Channel. Pablo explained that the main

reason he retired is “the pressure that was forced on him, the different levels of expectations that

people have cornered him within, and the constant labeling”. He said that he needed a break to

“recharge himself without being cornered”.

In January 2021, Pablo’s name was trending again when news circulated of his

prospective return after his profile picture on Facebook was changed. The new picture gained a

hundred thousand likes in a couple of hours, but he never made an official announcement about

it. On February 19, a leaked video on Twitter showcasing Pablo working on a new song,

preparing for his return, went viral. His name topped the trending list on Twitter that day in

Egypt. On February 25, Pablo returned to the music industry with the release of ‘Ghaba’ [Jungle]

and reactivating all his social media accounts. Marwan Pablo’s comeback music video surpassed

4,000,000 views on YouTube within the first 24 hours after release and hit the platform’s top 10

trending worldwide. On March 29 he announced an album named ‘CTRL’ containing 5 singles

‘Ghaba’, ‘El Hob Fein’, ‘CTRL’, ‘DON’ and ‘Atary’ which was a previously released unfinished

song before Pablo’s retirement. On October 1, Pablo held his first concert since his comeback in

New Cairo, accompanied by Palestinian rap group BLTNM members Shabjdeed, Al Nather and

Shabmouri. The tickets were sold out and the concert was attended by over 20 thousand people.

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