Najib Saeed Thabet: Excelling Over 25 Years [Archives:1999/03/Culture]

January 18 1999

Najib Saeed Thabet is one of the young singers who climbed to stardom in the Yemeni artistic arena in the 80s and is still shining until now. He enjoys a beautiful, emotional voice that enabled him to excel over the past 25 years.
Thabet, who has a diploma from the Arts Institute, is distinguished from his peers for his use of modern music which introduced a new touch on Yemeni songs.
Thabet was born in Aden in the 60s where he studied until the secondary stage and he was raised in an artistic family. His uncle Iskander Thabet was one of the renowned Yemeni singers.
While at school, he used to sing songs of famous Yemeni singers until he was discovered by Abdou Bohaisy who encouraged him a lot and urged him to go ahead in that field.
In the early 70s a number of musical bands were formed, one of which, Al Anwar, was in the school where Thabet was studying. He joined the band and shared in festivals organized by that band at various scholastic occasions. He later joined a national folklore troupe founded by Jamil Ghanem who had graduated with distinction from an Iraqi musical institute in playing the lute.
During that period, Thabet recorded his first song at the Aden Radio which represented the first artistic step for the young singer.
In 1974, he joined the Arts Institute in Aden and specialized in playing the lute and he benefited a lot from studying in that Institute.
With the formation of government bands in the early 80s, Thabet was one of the active elements in the Yemeni youth band and he became very famous among the youngsters.
He added his modern touches on various new songs introduced in the 80s which added to his credit. He sang for many Yemeni poets and was very careful in choosing poems that coped with various layers of the society and carried sublime meanings.
In the mid 80s, Thabet was appointed as head of the music section in the Aden culture administration bureau where he laid down an advanced basis in the Yemeni bands’ performance.
His artistic activities escalated since then and he encouraged other younger singers through supplying them with his advice and experience.
Despite many obstacles that hurdle development of arts in our country, yet there is hope in the revival of cultural and artistic activities with the efforts of our distinguished artists.
By: Saleh Abdulbaqi,
Yemen Times Art Editor