Raed El-Khazen's musical beginnings
Born and raised in Beirut during a time when music could not have been a part of his daily life, Raed El Khazen waited till he was 19 years old to pick up the guitar and pursue his passion. A year later he dropped out of college and became a full time musician climbing the ladder of the small scene Beirut had to offer at the time.
El Khazen's music studies
Life of musician El Khazen
At 23, he received a scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston where he had the opportunity to study with the likes of Pat Martino, John Scofield, John Abercrombie to name a few. Upon his graduation, he moved to New York where he resided for 10 years, playing and recording with a long list of contemporaries like Marcus Wolf, Avishai Cohen, Marko Djordjevic, Daniele Camarda, Lionel Loueke, Nicolas Sorin, Gonzalo Silva, Stéphane Mercier, Chris Cheek, Jojo Meyer, Derek Neirvegelt, Ari Honing, Didi Gutman, Jesse Murphy, and many others.
El Khazen in New York
Record producer Raed El Khazen
During his time in New York, Raed slowly got into production and film scoring which eventually lead him to move back to Lebanon and focus on the two new additions to his skillset. He produced some of the region's most influential contemporary albums and bands like Mashrou3 Leila, Tanjaret Daghet, Hello Psychaleppo and others.
Even though he did not consider himself an active musician during his 6 years production stint, he still recorded and played with well-known artists like Julia Boutros and Ziad Rahbani, as well as the new leading voices and musicians from the region like Tania Saleh, Rima Khcheich, Rim Banna, Khaled Yassin, Lynn Adib and Khaled Omran.
El Khazen then released an original album "Ghosts And Shadows" in 2016 with 7 original mantra-like pieces best described as visual sonic explorations, emotional and timeless, blending Arab culture and Western instrument.
Guitarist Raed El Khazen
Raed El Khazen as a music professional
In 2018, El Khazen was appointed to build an integrated arts platform that included music, dance and drama units as part of a multidisciplinary institution in Dubai dedicated to holistic education, development and wellbeing. Through this experience he got a detailed insight into contemporary teaching techniques and arts education in general, as well as a good handle on the business management aspect.
Raed El Khazen and Rekloose
The beginnings of Rekloose
In October 2019, he arrived to Beirut to work on a production project. Events unfolded different than planned - first in Lebanon and then globally.
During this time Raed El Khazen decided to pursue one of his passions in music: singing and playing the blues. Rekloose was born and a few singles were recorded and released in preparation for a full album in late 2021.
He is also working on new material for REK to be released around the same time.