Photo :

Clara Casero

Hanaa Ouassim

Hanaa Ouassim was born in Settat, Morocco, where she grew up surrounded by traditional music. From an early age, she began playing percussion in the women’s groups that performed at weddings. Her influences range from Chaabi to Dance-Hall, including Country, Shoegaze, Stoner, RNB and the divas of Arab music… She went to school in Reims. There she learned to compose music on her own, using her computer.

She soon started a musical nightlife, while continuing to play at traditional ceremonies. Playing at weddings allows her to play her instruments, the darbuka and bendir, over and over again.

Since high school, she has manipulated Ableton to create edits and remixes, which are featured in her DJ sets. In 2010, she moved to Paris, where clubbing is booming. She uses her knowledge of traditional repertoires to compose her own music, but also to create hybrid DJ sets. She quickly attracted attention, accompanying artists such as Léonie Pernet on stage (on percussion and vocals).

In 2013, she met Arthur from Pan European Recording, and began her collaboration with the label. She lives a nomad life, made up of adventures and solitary meetings in the secrecy of the recording studio. There, she wrote “La vie de star”, an album she composed and produced herself. Sung entirely in Darija (the Moroccan dialect), the album features pop, raï and electronic inspirations with an ever-changing folk music in the background. Her songs speak of the price of freedom, the great departure, the coastline, and escaping one’s destiny.