A fun fact that I learnt recently is that Raï means “opinion”.
One of the legends of the genre is Cheb Khaled, now considered to be the king of Raï music.
Cheb Khaled’s song Aicha rose in the global charts when I was about 12 and it was absolutely love at first listen. I loved this song so much that I even added it to the soundtracks of my life-post I wrote many years ago.
I love the song for its catchy melody and general atmosphere but I think its meaning was kind of lost to me. I may have understood that it was about a lady named Aicha and maybe even that the singer though she was beautiful and desirable. The gifts and praise he was raining down on Aicha, just to earn himself a glance, may have started to make sense as I learned French at school.
But it wasn’t until I really looked into the lyrics, many years later, that I saw that, in the bridge of the song, Aicha herself speaks up and says she will have none of it.
Khaled’s powerful voice never fails to sends chills down my spine when he wails out her only true desire:
Equal rights, respect every day and love!
You tell them, Aicha!
Each time I hear it, I realize how powerful this interlude in the song still is. Love it to bits. I’d name my daughter Aicha, just for those three lines.
Earlier today, the W-20 Women’s summit kicked off in Berlin with a panel- discussion titled „Inspiring women: Scaling Up Women’s Entrepreneurship”. There were some interesting names on the panel, our Dutch queen Maxima among others. I was looking forward to hearing what she had to say and how she stood her ground beside iconic powerhouses such as Angela Merkel and Christine Lagarde.
Sadly, media has reported on only one thing: Ivanka Trump. The one person I couldn’t care less about. She was apparently booed and hissed at by the audience when she tried to convince them her pops was a promoter of women’s rights. I can’t even roll my eyes hard enough.
Why was she even there?
All though I am quite certain the other members of the panel must have spoken as well and that what they had to say must’ve been pretty empowering or at least relevant, I can’t tell you for sure. All I know is that Maxima was the first speaker and that she described herself as a “feminist”, what in her vision meant “wanting equal rights” as well as freedom of choice. This drew applause from the audience, with Merkel saying, “Then I am one.”
Well shucks girls, I sure wish it wouldn’t be necessary to start the discussion at such a basic level but more so, I wish media had chosen more interesting snippets to quote…
I’m hoping the discussion will be online in full at some point so I can give it a go myself and see if I can collect some more interesting quotes.