Over a year ago Cairometal.net approached me with the idea of collaborating with Karl Sanders, the main songwriter of the metal band Nile. I couldn’t say no, but I wanted to make this more special than my usual collaborations; trading a few riffs and putting together a song. Since Karl has been writing about Egypt for over 20 years on his records with Nile, it seemed like a great idea to actually bring him to Egypt, especially since he has never visited, with the intention to inspire him with the culture, the country and all its history.
To make the trip and the songwriting come together smoothly I enlisted the help of none-other than former Nile Collaborator and fellow South Carolinian Derek Roddy, a phenomena in the music world of drumming, as well as the fiercest guitarist in the Middle East Mahmud Gecekusu, who is Turkish-with Egyptian heritage in his bloodline. I took them to many ancient sites, however it was also important to have them experience something more contemporary, like a “Zar” ritual and a performance by “whirling dervishes.” By doing so I was hoping to give them more than the typical “tourist” experience, with something even more dimensional, so they can truly absorb how Egypt functions and its various facets. Accompanying us was Karl's lovely wife Michelle, who documented the trip with great photographs. The songwriting experience was exceptional; Derek took charge and led the way with his bombastic rhythm and insane blasting. It was a greatly synchronized team effort with each one contributing a part to the song. I’m excited at the prospect of sharing the song as soon as it is fully recorded, mixed and mastered. More will be revealed in good time. For now, I hope you enjoy our conversation and the small snippets of the song that can be heard in the background. Watch below:
Photo by Michelle Mercado