Deep Dive by Sam Blenkinsopp

Issam on Driving a Creative Movement in Morocco

The next wave of creatives in Morocco are pushing the boundaries of what’s expected from a country that’s deep rooted in tradition. At the forefront is Issam, a rapper whose music offers an authentic lens into the movement happening within the country.

We linked up with Issam in a small apartment in the heart of Gueliz, the new town of Marrakech. Him and his crew were finishing up the cut of his new video, ‘Makinch Zhar’. His role as director, editor and co-producer was an early indicator that his creativity surpases the music he’s known for.

Using the platform he’s built and more specifically this video, Issam showcases some of Morocco’s most up and coming creatives. It's this hunger to elevate local talent that’s part of his early success in forging this new movement.

While Issam was showing us around the neighborhood, young boys passing on mopeds spot us, do a u-turn and grab a selfie. It’s clear the Moroccan youth now have a figure they can finally resonate with.

Today we’re excited to be exclusively premiering “Makinch Ezhar” - meaning “there is no chance”. Issam told us that his vision for the video was to “showcase ‘our future’ of Morocco and our take on futuristic Moroccan fashion”. With a total budget of €500 it really shines light on the whole team’s creative capabilities.

His two previous releases, Caviar and Trap Beldi, have racked up over 10 million views on YouTube collectively, which clearly highlights the impact his music is having. Blending influences from American hip-hop and trap, European electronic beats, Algerian Rai and Moroccan Chaabi, it’s safe to say he has a unique style that epitomises the type of cultural exchange that we’re all about at Trippin. For someone that has never left his country, it’s a strong signal of how the internet has changed the game.

Unfortunately travel isn’t a part of Issam’s reality, as he’s faced with political obstacles when trying to obtain visas and cross borders. He told us that “without freedom of travel, ALL suffer, not just me as an artist.” He manages to turn this unjust situation into a positive saying that “my weakness is my strength”. Making a conscious decision to use the platform he’s created to shine light on the fact Morocco is lacking serious infrastructure, Issam said he is “paving the way for future creatives by exposing the need for more facilities and creative spaces, here in Morocco.”

From our time with Issam, it became clear how he never puts himself first and always lets the work do the talking. Despite drawing international references, he remains authentic to his own identity and culture and is truly flying the flag for Moroccans.

Photography: Vicky Grout

Music video

Director / Co-Producer: Issam

Co-Producer: Yazid

Art Direction: Hamza Robati

DOP: Essadik Asli

Stylist: Artc

Model: Talila Oulhaj


Related:

View all features