I think it's safe to assume that Beirut has a wicked awesome music scene. Despite the ridiculous portion of the population that still blast Oppa Gangnam Style from their cars (seriously guys, it was so 2012), we have some burgeoning young talent, most of which have barely gotten their feet wet in the vast pool that is the Beirut music scene. Still, we've browsed the masses and pulled who we think are the five most likely to succeed Beirut music musicians.

If you're a musician, but aren't on this list, don't fret. If I were to list all the awesome talent in the city, this post would be five miles long. But for the sake of space (and my sanity), here are some of my favorite upcoming artists:

1. Maya Aghniadis

In all honesty, Aghniadis's voice wasn't what struck me during her first big performance at Beirut Jam Session's We Were Evergreen concert. Instead, her whimsical lyrics, upbeat demeanor and all around pleasantness were what landed her the spot on this list. In any case, her music, in all its fanciful loveliness, won't fail to put a smile on your face. Check out her latest video with We Were Evergreen here:

2. Charlie Rayne

This budding young talent has barely stepped into the music scene, but already has quite the following. His career, which begun sometime late last year, already boasts performances at Metro al Medina, Radio Beirut, Beirut Open Stage, Pecha Kucha and other venues around the city. Though he's yet to master his voice, Rayne's style brings to mind the likes of Bob Marley and Bon Iver. The best part? His lyrics actually made me laugh out loud. After all, how many musicians can make you do that?

3. The Banana Cognacs

This Beirut band has so many things going for them. Besides the badass name, The Banana Cognacs already have had an interview with Future TV, and gigs all around Beirut. Playing experimental funk and blues, the band brings a unique twist to Beirut's music scene. Though he claims to have no Caribbean ties (pending investigation), the lead singer's Jamaican-esque voice paves the way for The Banana Cognacs's road to success.

4. Karim Douaidy

So maybe I have a thing for acoustics. And maybe Karim Douaidy is a really, really amazing guitarist. With strums and fiddles that make me feel like I'm lounging in a Spanish street fair, Douaidy's tunes are probably the loveliest I've heard from any Beirut musician. Completely instrumental, his music does the talking for him. Trust me--click on the link. Pour yourself a glass of your favorite brandy or OJ, and sigh in blissful pleasure while listening to the best Beirut has to offer.

5. The Wanton Bishops

Last, but certainly not least, The Wanton Bishops. If you caught my rant last December, you'll get the gist of what I mean by "they're freaking awesome." Then again, who doesn't love some grit and grunge once in a while? In a style never before seen in Beirut, The Wanton Bishops tore up their first big gig in Solea V last December, and just got back from their tour of France and Scandinavia. And for a duo that just began early last year, that's pretty friggin' awesome.



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Beirut.com is by far the most pronounced connoisseur of this city's art scene. Bless your editorial wit and ability to expose what's really relevant to the curious Beirut dweller/traveller/passer-by ;)

Ghassan Khayyat on May 28, 2013 via mobile web