Sunday, November 27, 2005

Nothing, NOTHING, illustrates the vapidness of Lebanonese culture than the "shows" put up by Mansur Rahbani and his sons. Since the death of `Asi, you can't even think of one song by Mansur. The death of `Asi exposed the truth about the "Rahbani Brothers." There is no brothers; it was all `Asi, who had the talent, and his son tells `Abidu Basha in his book of interviews, that `Asi despised the Phalanges in Lebanon. To compensate for lack of talents, Mansur produces (or his oil benefactors produce for him) those silly "grand" shows, with hundreds of musicians and dancers, but there is no there there. Even his play on "the last days of Socrates,"--I shudder that he was even allowed to touch that topic--had to recycle the same Rahbani cliches about the village, the moon, and the night guard, and the silly Lebanonese folklore. I am glad that an American student, Chris Stone, wrote his PhD at Princeton on the Rahbani brothers. I read one chapter of it, and it was excellent. I am looking forward to seeing it in print. Mansur is most remembered for this song:
I love you Lebanon; O, my homeland, I love you
In your north, in your south, and in your sun I love you.." Enjoy.