posted on July 09, 2007 07:40
The most intriguing event in this week's Paris concert listings takes place tonight at our favourite live venue, La Fleche d'Or.
Lebanese Underground Party is a night of bands and DJs from the Lebanon, on the Lebanese Underground independent record label. Acts include rock bands Scrambled Eggs, Bamby And The Dogs, Domingo and Lumi, hip hop from Rayess Bek and DJ sets from Jade and Cocosuma.
There's no fundraising or overt political agenda to the night - just a celebration of Lebanese acts and the surprisingly active Beirut scene.
There are close historical and cultural links between France and Lebanon. The Middle Eastern state was a French protectorate between the two world wars, proclaiming its independence in 1943 while France was under Nazi occupation. Lebanon's judicial and educational systems are based on the French models, and French is one of the most popular school languages.
Until the start of the civil war in 1975 (chronicled definitively by Robert Fisk in 'Pity The Nation'), Beirut was known as the Paris of the East, such was its beauty and glamour. Today, like Belfast, it's trying to shake off its war-torn image - though recent violence has once again pulled the rug from under Beirut's reconstruction.