Thursday 18 August 2022, 8pm

Rizan Said photo by Ana Viotti / Anadol photo by Niclas Weber

Contrapop presents: Rizan Said + Anadol (DJ)

£16 £14 Advance £8 MEMBERS

Delighted to host a Contra Pop Festival primer ahead of its return to Ramsgate Beach on the 20th+21st of August, featuring Syrian composer, musician and producer, Rizan Said, and a DJ set from multifaceted Turkish artist, Anadol.

Contra Pop Festival info and tickets

Rizan Said

Rizan Said is a composer, musician and producer, responsible for hundreds of Syrian recording industry productions as well as compositions and themes for television and cinema. His first solo album, The King of Keyboard (Annihaya Records, 2015) continues to receive critical acclaim internationally. Rizan’s recent solo performances have brought the original dabke dance sounds of Syria to European festivals and concerts, and kept people partying until sunrise. In late 2019, his second solo album was released on Akuphone Records.

Rizan originally hails from the town of Ras Al Ain, in northeastern Syria, in the region known as the Jazeera. He currently lives between Ras Al Ain and Sweden.

Rizan was a musical prodigy from a young age – a gifted player of percussion and reed instruments before a wealth of synthesizers began flooding Syria in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Steadfast on the Syrian cassette album circuit at the time, Rizan was already sending his signals out from the Jazeera frontier, thanks to a partnership with local Syrian producer Zuhir Maksi.

As a composer in Syria, Rizan’s songs include: Bas Asma Mni (by Sarya Al Suwas), Nadran Aalaya (by Asi El Hellani). As composer and producer for Syrian television, Rizan’s work includes music for the TV drama Al Hosrom Al Shami.

One of the artists he has played, toured and recorded with for a long time is Omar Souleyman.

Tour highlights included: Le Guess Who, Beaches Brew, Down the Rabbit Hole, Iceland Airwaves, Amsterdam Dance Event, Dour, Roots&Hybrid, Open Source, Best Kept Secret.


“Whether it is traditional or contemporary, we need to be authentic,” says Gözen Atila who performs as Anadol. “I don't claim that I am authentic, but this is what I want to achieve.” A sense of authentic exploration, introspection and celebration coats every inch of Anadol’s latest album, Felicita. After 2019’s Uzun Havalar, the Turkish artist returns with an album that continues to explore a variety of deeply embedded musical traditions while also hurtling into new terrain. The music and influences – as well as the history, culture and geography behind them – that inform Atila as an artist coalesce to create something entirely new. The result is something that simultaneously explores history and tradition, while harnessing innovative modern sounds and techniques. “If there is any tradition I am somehow connected to, or influenced by, then it’s multi-genres,” she says. “Such as Turkish Pop and Arabesk music from this country where I grew up. There is a connection to Folk and also French Pop or Flamenco, Middle Eastern melodies and orchestration, Greek adaptations, Kenny G. solos, American guitars.”

For Contra Pop 2022, Anadol channels these diverse influences into a special DJ set.

You may also like

19 Aug 2022 – 7PM

Robyn's Rocket DJ night with Mica Levi + Heart N Soul DJs

£10 £8 Advance £6 MEMBERS

20 Aug 2022 – 8PM

Super Off-Peak Return – w/ Arianne Churchman + Bredbeddle + Jem Finer + Plastique Fantastique

£10 £8 Advance £5 MEMBERS