Album artwork for East Of Any Place

East Of Any Place Roger Fakhr

Cat No: HABIBI025-1
Barcode: 673790037213
26,90 €
  • 657ac2d16930b
  • release
Around 2 years ago, we released an album by Rogér Fakhr entitled “Fine Anyway” on Habibi Funk. It came about as a result of afternoons spent at Issam Hajali’s jewelry shop on Mar Elias Street in Beirut. We had started working on the idea of re-releasing some of Issam’s music and he proposed his first album “Mouasalat Ila Jacad El Ard,” recorded before starting his band Ferkat Al Ard. At some point, Issam mentioned how he had actually kept some of Rogér’s music on tape in his basement - but cautioned that he couldn’t play it to us before Rogér would give the green light. Eventually, after some hesitation, Rogér luckily did. During this time there were a number of ongoing projects and we somehow missed out on inquiring further. Yet Rogér’s name kept on coming up in conversations with musicians of the same generation in Beirut. No matter whether it was Ziad Rahbani, Munir Khauli or anyone else talking about him, every single mention would almost inevitably be followed with a huge praise for his music and approval of his talent. The disparity between him being so highly appreciated amongst his peers, while somehow simultaneously not being part of the researchable musical history of Lebanon (at least to us!) of the last decades, baffled me and at some point, we just asked Issam for Rogér’s contact. After, we exchanged some emails and he ended up sending a selection of music recorded in the late 1970’s in Beirut. While some of that material had never seen a release, other songs were released on his album “Fine Anyway” - which Rogér had, at the time of release, hand copied around 200 cassette copies. When we first heard the songs of “Fine Anyway” we were blown away! The music was a mixture of folk with touches of other genres. Maybe one could also refer to it as “singer-songwriter,” since all of the songs were Rogér’s own compositions. Songs of unique beauty both musically and lyrically. At the same time, they gave us the feeling of them being somehow isolated capsule of time and space. Nothing really revealed where they could’ve been recorded and, not knowing it was Beirut, a first guess would have likely been Southern California, sometime in the 1970’s. The immersive effect of his compositions and voice are just incredible. When we put the album out, we knew we loved the songs and the music, but with its sound being slightly different and the lyrics sung in English, we were not sure whether it would find the same appreciation that other releases had had under the umbrella of Habibi Funk. Luckily, the appreciation of the album became quite apparent very quickly and it did not die down in the years to follow. In the process of putting together “Fine Anyway” we came across a number of other songs Rogér had recorded around the same time. Initially Rogér was not too fond of them for one reason or another, though in our minds the musical quality was not the reason. It was a treasure trove of songs that only a handful of people had access to. Some time ago, Rogér started working on some new songs that will hopefully will turn into a new album, and while we spoke about these, we brought up all these other songs we still had from the same sessions as “Fine Anyway,” and that we felt it would be great to share them with the world as a bonus to the songs already shared as part of “Fine Anyway.” Luckily, Rogér eventually agreed, and this is how we are able to share “East of Any Place.” As always, both vinyl and CD come with an extensive booklet featuring background and interviews with Rogér, including unseen photos, scans and more. “Rogér Fakhr: East of Any Place” will be out everywhere December 1st to coincide with Bandcamp Friday, be sure to listen to eponymous focus track, the psych-folk-tinged “East of Any Place.”

Kompakt Newsletter

Stay in the loop and subscribe to our webshop newsletter

Follow Kompakt