• “You have to make people live every second of the pieces you write.” - An interview with the progressive metal one man project Bader Nana

    Bader Nana logo

    Bader Nana is one of the few truly intriguing one man projects. The Kuwait-based Libanese multi-instrumentalist has released two progressive rock and metal orientated full length records so far with Wormwood in 2011 and Anthology in 2013. The musician and singer is always often for experiments and has also released acoustic tributes to Michael Jackson’s greatest hits or honoured different video game soundtracks. Right now, Bader Nana is already working on his third full length effort. I was able to contact this rising star of the progressive metal scene and ask him a few questions.  

    Bader Nana at his studio in 2014

    TMO: “Hello Bader Nana and thank you very much for accepting this interview occasion for The Metal Observer. Could you please introduce yourself to our readers?”

    BN: “Hello, thank you for this interview. My name is Bader Nana and I’m a one man band. I write, record and produce my own music. I’m from Lebanon and living in Kuwait.”

    TMO: “How would you describe and classify your music?”

    BN: “I mainly like progressive rock but I like to experiment and add other genres along the writing process.”

    TMO: “You are living in Kuwait and of Lebanese origin. It’s quite rare to find progressive rock and metal artists from both places. How did you get in touch with this kind of music? Are there any other promising bands or projects in these countries that one should know about?”

    BN: “I was born in Kuwait but I’m originally from Lebanon. I love music since I was a kid and started playing the guitar at the age 18. My good friend Khalid Abu Warda was my guitar teacher. A few years later I met the Ramman brothers Ramzi and Ziad. They introduced  me to one of my favorite bands of all time now: “Dream Theater”. This is where it all began for me. The Lebanese music scene is big, you could find every kind of musicians and bands there. Just let me mention a few: JLP, The Karma Initiative, Who Killed Bruce Lee and so on. It’s hard to find a band in Kuwait that focuses on progressive music but you could find some that play classic rock, jazz and death metal.”

    TMO: “Apart of a few guest appearances you record all instruments on your own. What are the first instruments you have learned to play? Do you have any favorite instrument?”

    BN: “My first instrument was the guitar. Later on, I played some keyboards, bass and drums. My favorite instrument is the flute.

    TMO:What do you do to constantly improve your skills?”

    BN: “Practice.

    TMO: “Usually, I think records of multi-instrumentalists are rather boring because most musicians just make them to show off their talent and Elaborate on overlong solo passages instead of focusing on coherent song writing. You are in fact the only solo project that I really adore because your music sounds very atmospheric, diversified and well elaborated. What is your secret to convince critical minds like me?”

    BN: “It’s not about showing your talent! You can play very slow and still make people cry. That is where you really show it off. You have to make people live every second of the pieces you write. That’s what I basically aim for.”

    TMO:Did you ever play in an actual band or did you ever give live concerts until now?”

    BN: “I was in few bands before I went solo. My favorite one was Terminus. I was the lead singer and guitarist. We did some live shows around Kuwait.”

    TMO:In the beginning of your career, you have recorded an album with acoustic versions of Michael Jackson songs. That’s a rather unusual choice for a progressive rock and metal musician and singer like you. What makes Michael Jackson so special for you?

    BN: “Michael Jackson is my idol. I started listening to him when I was 3 years old. I still have a video of me and my brother in 1986 dancing to “Billie Jean”. I might post that soon, hehe. The acoustic versions I made were my tribute to him.”

    TMO: “Apparently you are also a big fan of video games and their soundtracks. You have recorded tributes to game soundtracks such as God Of War, Gears Of War, Battlefield, Assassins Creed and so on. What is so fascinating about video game soundtracks for you?”

    BN: “I love gaming, it’s in my blood. Soundtracks in games are like movie scores nowadays and I’m a big fan of movies scores. So I really pay attention to music in games while I’m playing and some of it really hit me hard.”

    TMO:What are the progressive rock and metal bands that had an important impact on you?

    BN: “I would say Dream Theater, Symphony X, Neal Morse, Spock’s Beard and Transatlantic.”

    TMO:Your first record with own material is called Wormwood and came out in 2011. How much time did it take to write and record this album?”

    BN: “It took me a year to finish it. It was a journey to remember. Thanks to my good friend Hadi Sarieddine for accompanying me during the entire writing and recording process.”

    TMO: “Why did you finally decide to compose and release your very own music?”

    BN: “Well, I realized that I could produce more while I’m working on my own. I simply understand myself.”

    TMO: “How did you promote your first record and what kind of reactions did you get?”

    BN: “Bandcamp was the first thing I heard about through a friend. I posted the whole album as a free download so the world could listen to it. The feedback I got from all around the world was incredible.”

    TMO: “Your second full length release of own material is entitled Anthology and came out in 2013. Why did you call the record that way?

    BN: “I didn’t want to write a theme album like Wormwood so I came up with that album title before I even wrote the songs. Basically, my inspiration was to write about different topics from different times. It’s a complete collection of works. That’s what Anthology is all about.

    TMO: “What are the main differences between your first and your second release?”

    BN: “The first one was a themed album telling a story from the beginning to the end. The second one was talking about different topics.”

    TMO: My favorite song from your amazing records is probably “War” because it mixes a dark atmosphere with a message of hope and love in the catchy chorus. What was the concept behind this particular track?”

    BN: “Ah, “War” is a very strong song. It mainly talks about how war never ends and still so many people are losing their loved ones cause of it. It’s a sad thing.”

    TMO: Do you have any personal favorite tracks among your songs?

    BN: “I love’em all, hehe. But honestly said, my favorite track from Wormwood would be “Destroyer of Worlds”. My favourite song from Anthology is “The Discovery.”

    TMO: Right now, you are already in the making of a third full length release. What can we expect from your next album?

    BN: “Hmm…well, I hope this next album turns out the way you’re expecting it to be. Expect a very long track, too.”

    TMO:Do you have any plans for spreading your next record’s name around the world?

    BN: “Not at the moment, but soon.”

    TMO: Thank you again for this interview. I’m eager to listen to your upcoming release. The last words to our readers are yours.

     

    BN: “Thank you and keep it real!”

     

    Please vist: http://badernana.bandcamp.com/

    Bader Nana discography

    « Pompeii (2014) - It all depends on your attitude - 7/10 (06/02/14)“You have to make people live every second of the pieces you write.” - An interview with the progressive metal one man project Bader Nana »
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