Review: 17 Hippies, Sign of Thyme and the Fall of the Berlin Wall

الخميس 12 تشرين الثاني 2009

By Lara Marto
17 Hippies in Amman

On the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall, and under the umbrella of the European Film Festival, Monday November 9th was dedicated to a night of music and film organized by the German Embassy and the French Cultural Center featuring our own Sign of Thyme and the German 17 Hippies that energized the audience and left them craving more. If you weren’t there you missed a great evening.

The evening started with a documentary about the story of the Berlin wall, the reasons behind building it, the political lie denying the intention of building it and the way peoples’ lives changed when Eastern and Western Germany were formed. It was a good 15-minute emotional historical film that took you through the will of the nation to tear down that wall and the transformation of Germany and Europe as a whole.

After the film concluded, some of the official guests left and people who had been waiting outside were allowed in. Sign of Thyme kicked off the concert and played three excellent pieces; Asma – a jazz/funk piece from their upcoming album, Mandeera – a Turkish piece, and Nile, a classical Arabic piece from Egyptian musician and composer Abdo Dagher. The violinist, Abed Dukhan, performed beautiful solos with a free spirit satisfying the crowd’s taste with Arabic flavored music.

As the Hussein Cultural Center Hall was getting packed with nowhere to sit or stand 17 Hippies (or 13 in reality) took their place on stage with their colorful outfits like school kids who can’t wait to show off their talent. And what talent! 17 Hippies won the show by playing their gypsy hippie music for around two hours, dancing, jumping, and switching between instruments showing off their passion for music and art. They played in harmony and sang in three different languages with emotion, inviting the crowds to dance and jump and just go with the flow of music. I personally loved the clarinet player, the sound was so pure and smooth as if he never runs out of breath. The music was somewhat repetitive but 17 Hippies kept the crowd wanting more by involving them in clapping, singing and dancing. Jordan loved that. Sign of Thyme joined them on stage for the last song and added to the energy with their solos especially on drums and percussion.

Next time 17 Hippies should come in summer and play in an open area like Al Hussein Park. They’re too cool to be performing in a hall.

Rating: 9/10 (it was a long show!)

Check out this video courtesy of the “Eye on Jordan” channel on ikbis:

You can see more YouTube videos of Monday’s concert here.