126 episodes

Stories from the Middle East and North Africa, and the spaces in between. 

Kerning Cultures is produced by Kerning Cultures Network. Support this podcast on https://www.patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $2 a month.

Kerning Cultures Kerning Cultures Network

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 432 Ratings

Stories from the Middle East and North Africa, and the spaces in between. 

Kerning Cultures is produced by Kerning Cultures Network. Support this podcast on https://www.patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $2 a month.

    The Secret Somali Tapes

    The Secret Somali Tapes

    It’s 1988, and Somalis are fleeing the city of Hargeisa. People are trying to get out, trying to save their families. But in the city’s radio station, staff are packing cassettes and reel to reel recordings into a secret underground bunker. On them: A slice of their country’s musical heritage, to remain for years in an underground room—until now.

    This episode was produced in collaboration with Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala, from the TED Audio Collective. To listen to other episodes that travel all over the world to explore ideas, follow Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala wherever you're listening to this.

    This episode was produced by Sawsan Abdillahi, Hiwote Getaneh, Alex Atack and Saleem Reshamwala. Production support in Hargeisa by Ismaaciil C. Ubax. Fact checking by Nicole Bode and Paul Durban, and sound design by Kristin Mueller. The executive producer was Eric Nuzum.

    Special thanks to Vik Sahonie at Ostinato Records for letting us use the music from the Sweet As Broken Dates album.

    You can hear songs from the buried tapes on this Spotify playlist.

    Find a transcript for this episode on our website: kerningcultures.com/kerningcultures. 

    Support this podcast on patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $2 a month.

    • 29 min
    Introducing… Masafat

    Introducing… Masafat

    We’re excited to share another podcast from the Kerning Cultures Network with you.

    Masafat is Kerning Cultures’ soul sister. It’s a series of Arabic audio documentaries driven by curiosity. Exploring unfamiliar dimensions from the past or the present.

    In this episode, we introduce a music genre surrounded by a lot of controversy: Mahragant music in Egypt. Why do we only listen to Mahraganat by men? Why haven’t women broken into Mahraganat yet?

    Masafat is a Kerning Cultures Network production. 

    This episode was produced by Lobna Monieb, and edited by Shahd Bani Odeh and Alma Intabli. Editorial support by Heba Afify, Rand Khdair, Nadeen Shaker, Dina Salem and Nima Salha. Fact-checking by Tamara Jaburi. Sound design by Mohamad Khreizat. 

    Listen to Masafat wherever you get your podcasts.

    • 49 min
    Sheikh Imam: Voice of Dissent

    Sheikh Imam: Voice of Dissent

    A blind oud player from humble beginnings, Sheikh Imam’s destiny changed drastically when he met a dissident poet called Ahmed Fouad Negm, and they formed a duo. Together, they would go on start a new era in Egyptian popular music. Their songs would shake regimes, travel the world on cassette tapes, and transcend their own time to become part of the soundtrack to Egypt’s revolution decades later.

    Today, the story of Sheikh Imam: the Egyptian singer who became an icon of dissent.

    This episode was produced by Nadeen Shaker, Heba El-Sherif and Alex Atack, and edited by Dana Ballout. Fact checking was by Deena Sabry and sound design, music and mixing by Monzer El Hachem. Voice over by Eihab Seoudi, and translation help from Maha El Kady. Cover art by Ahmad Salhab.

    The songs you heard on this episode were composed and performed by Sheikh Imam and written by Ahmed Fouad Negm and Zein Alabidin Fouad. Lyric translations were by Ahmed Hassan and Elliott Colla.

    Fill out our listener survey here (it’ll only take 5 minutes!)

    Support this podcast on patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $2 a month.

    You can find a transcript for this episode at our website, kerningcultures.com/kerningcultures.

    • 45 min
    The Intifada Tapes

    The Intifada Tapes

    Stuck in his Palestinian hometown of Jenin during lockdown, Mo’min Swaitat walked into an old music shop where thousands of dusty cassettes lined the walls. They contained decades of Palestinian music and field recordings once confiscated by the Israeli army, long since forgotten, and never meant to make it out of Palestine.

    This is the story of what was on those cassettes, and Mo’min’s mission to give them a second life.

    This episode was produced by Nadeen Shaker and edited by Dana Ballout. Fact checking by Deena Sabry, sound design and mixing by Nadeen Shaker, Alex Atack and Monzer El Hachem. Our team also includes Zeina Dowidar.

    You can listen to the Intifada album on Bandcamp.

    Support this podcast on patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $2 a month.

    • 22 min
    Rocket Man

    Rocket Man

    In the 1960s, a college professor and his group of students were determined to build and launch rockets into space. And so, they did. This week, on Kerning Cultures, a story about the first-ever rocket launched from the Arab world into space.

    This episode first aired in 2020 and was produced by Tamara Rasamny with editorial support from Dana Ballout, Zeina Dowidar, Alex Atack, Nadeen Shaker, and Hebah Fisher. Sound design by Mohamad Khreizat, and fact-checking by Zeina Dowidar.

    Support this podcast on patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $1 a month.

    • 43 min
    Saving Mesopotamia's Marshes

    Saving Mesopotamia's Marshes

    Azzam Alwash remembers the marshlands of southern Iraq as a magical place, where he would spend long days gliding through the thick reeds by boat with his father. But for decades now, the area has been under threat, so Azzam has become part of the effort to save the natural wonder before it's too late.

    This episode was produced by Dana Ballout, Alex Atack and Tamara Juburi with fact checking by Deena Sabry. Sound design and mixing by Alex Atack and Mohamad Khreizat.

    A special thanks to Azzam Alwash for speaking to us.

    Support this podcast on patreon.com/kerningcultures for as little as $2 a month.

    Find a transcript for this episode at our website, kerningcultures.com/kerningcultures.

    • 16 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
432 Ratings

432 Ratings

ncantusethisapp ,

Wonderful wonders

I caught an episode on Sheikh Imam on “The Kitchen Sisters Presents” and I am grateful beyond words to the creators, reporters, presenters, producers, and crew who have made this podcast (and the “Masafat” podcast). It makes me so proud to be hearing theses stories from these perspectives and not one that is euro-centric, not of the “other” but of ourselves. Thank you, thank you, thank you. This is a precious gift and I do not think it is possible to measure the positive impact this will make on the people of the region, the diaspora and the world at large. In much appreciation for conserving and presenting the beauty and humanity of our culture, Nermin

laith_means_lion ,

Essential listening

If you care about the most important issues and marginalised voices in the SWANA region particularly, but aren’t listening to/supporting Kerning Cultures, then you are missing out big-time. Yalla listen!

Quit quantity ,

Great storytelling

Great journalism with a compelling narrative. I appreciate the perspective of an underrepresented (to an American audience) part of the world.

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