Ahmad Ubad al-Huseini: The Poet & The Fedayee [Archives:2001/01/Culture]

December 31 2001

Since the 1940s, a cluster of poets and singers has enriched the Yemeni songs driving them to the stage of popularity. Ahmad Ubad al-Huseini was one of those who contributed a lot to the development and enrichment of Yemeni songs, particularly in the southern governorates of the country.
Al-Huseini was born in 1944 in al-Hawttah village of Lahj. He was educated by his father, a learned sheikh, before he joined the school in al-Hawttah.
Since he was a child, it was noticed that al-Huseini did not mix a lot with children at his age to play or to spend his free time. His tendency to sit with people older then him and his love for reading and poetry made people describe his mind as bigger than his age. As he grew up, he amazed people more by his ability to compose high quality poems. He studied standard Arabic and history and became a reference in these fields for his colleagues.
It can be said that the rich library of his father, was the source that he got the first streams of knowledge from. It was said that his father was keen on making his son following his father’s footsteps. He ensured that his son got knowledge from many sources before he gave him the freedom to choose what suited him for his future career. Al-Huseini joined the preparatory school which was the highest level of school study at the time. After that he worked as a teacher, a job that was highly respected.
The first singers to sing al-Huseini poems were Salah Nasser Kurd and Faisal Alawi. The three formed a team working in sweet harmony. Then many others, especially in Lahj, started to sing his songs.
When the organized resistance against the British colonization started to emerge, al-Huseini stopped writing and advocated his time to fighting the occupiers. Like many other intellectuals, he fought with a gun and a pen. Besides being a founder of the National Front in Lahj, he published the Laborer’s Voice newspaper which he was running by his own.
Al-Huseini also wrote a number of dramas. One of his well-known works for the stage was ‘Fedayee No. 13’ which depicted the Yemenis struggle to get rid of the British colonization.
After the South of Yemen got its independence in 1967, al-Huseini held a number of government posts until he passed away on April 23, 1969.