Text by CLOT Magazine
In a show of support to Lebanon’s music scene, Morphine and CTM Festival, in collaboration with Beirut artist initiatives Irtijal Festival, Ruptured, Tunefork Studios, The Ballroom Blitz and Frequent Defect, and Unsound Festival in Poland, have put together a selection of artists that will contribute live-streamed and pre-recorded performances to a marathon 17-hour online event.
The main purpose of the Morphine X Beirut event is to support the Lebanese Musicians’ Fund, an initiative set up by Tunefork Studios in order to provide relief to musicians impacted by the deadly blast of August 4th.
In the words of Morphine’s Rabih Beaini: In addition to sitting on one of the world’s most turbulent political fault lines, Lebanon’s capital city of Beirut has undergone, in the past year alone, a steady collapse of its economy, waves of revolutionary protests, a deadly criminal blast that devastated entire neighbourhoods and, last but not least, renewed spikes in Covid-19 fatalities.
This disastrous chain of events has resulted in exposing Lebanon’s deeply-corrupt sectarian ruling elite, a group of ruthless warlords who remain entirely oblivious to the country’s worsening situation and show no intention of mending the situation or aiding the country’s devastated areas. One of our main roles as citizens is to defy authority once the latter displays signs of corruption. Defiance can be expressed in many ways; collective disobedience is one, and another is an artistic expression.
For this reason, Morphine Records has invited Lebanese musicians and DJs to gather and express their anger through an extended musical event in Beirut on the 1st anniversary of the October Revolution of 2019. Recorded in one of the capital’s most illustrious venues, The Ballroom Blitz, the star-studded line-up of Beirut-based musicians is curated by Ruptured Records, Irtijal Festival, the Frequent Defect music collective, and Ballroom Blitz. Fadi Tabbal and his team from a renowned local studio, Tunefork, engineered the concerts.
The event will be streamed via diverse channels, including Morphine’s Twitch channel. Viewers will also be able to interact with the live performers via Streamback, a new browser-based streaming platform developed together with CTM that allows viewers to upload short videos and send these to screens placed in front of the remote performers. Through video reactions to the music, such as dancing, applause, or other shows of support, the audience can interact and encourage musicians as they play. To participate, viewers must register an account with Streamback (free) and watch via their channel.
Follow the event here.