RIYADH: Saudi DJ duo Dish Dash have been making music for some years, entertaining crowds in London, Miami and across the Arab world. But it is only recently that their star has started shining more brightly in the Kingdom.
Brothers Hassan and Abbas Ghazzawi come from a musical family and attended many concerts growing up, but it was an Erick Morillo concert that got them hooked on dance music.
“We grew up in a family of musicians, so we always had support. We got mentorship from (Canadian record producer) Tone Depth, and we studied at the SAE Institute in London to perfect our craft and get involved in production alongside DJ-ing,” Hassan, who is one half of Dish Dash, told Arab News. “We think about how to get people hooked to our sound; it’s from there you can really take them on a journey and experiment, you just need to win them over first.”
Riyadh last month hosted the largest EDM festival in the Middle East, MDL Beast, featuring some of the world’s biggest DJ names including Steve Aoki, Tiesto and Martin Garrix. There was also a local lineup that was able to take the spotlight in Saudi Arabia for the first time.
Hassan revealed that fear of having an event shut down had been an issue in the past, but that many event promoters nowadays were seeking local talent to host their events.
“My brother Abbas and I never imagined being where we are in our home country today, but on the international scene, we feel we’ve been moving in the right direction with our last releases on Tone Depth’s Flora7Fauna (music label), and a lot more on the way."
He expressed his optimism at the way the country's music scene was evolving, and how it gave artists such as Dish Dash the chance to act as ambassadors for Saudi Arabia at an international and cultural level.
“It’s amazing to be able to say that there’s a future for this industry in Saudi. We now have the potential to really get to the top while representing our country positively. It has been a real privilege from seeing the surprise in artists that they’re going to be performing in Saudi Arabia, to getting to share the stage with huge names like Black Coffee, Solomun and Marco Carola at home is just amazing.”
Music is one aspect of society and holding music events has given Saudi artists, producers and DJs the chance to show off their skills. “We hope to continue contributing in showing the world what Saudi Arabia is really like,” said Hassan.
The brothers played “All of Us MBS” to hundreds of thousands of people at MDL Beast. “It received a great response from the audience. We are releasing it very soon.”
Hassan said it was their dream to create a Saudi-made traveling festival experience so that they could share their music and talent on a much bigger scale than DJ sets.
“We’re planning some special events to help educate Saudi youth on electronic music, we’re really looking forward to those,” he said, before adding an uplifting message for emerging artists.
“Did you ever imagine Saudi Arabia could hold an electronic music festival? Everything is possible, just don’t give up.”