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[noun]

musivv.com’s digital magazine dedicated to multi-disciplinary artists.

march 2021

Never give up on music! Reach out! Don't go through mental health problems by yourself!

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TAIFI

Tough As Nails

Taifi's musical journey is as exciting as his demeanor. His sister who practically raised him forbade him to pick up a guitar or anything that resembles music in the slightest connotation. Taifi took a deep pause to choose words wisely in an attempt to unfold the story as accurately as possible. "This is where I consider myself a genius at a very young age." He devised a clever plan: save money to buy a cheap guitar and woo her sister in. He vividly remembers playing a song by his sister's favorite artist. The plan worked. Taifi got the nod he wanted. In retrospect, like any responsible parent, the tension was all in the name of good intention — focusing on getting a degree. Fast-forward decades later, their bond as siblings is unbreakable. His band Watad (which means 'peg' in English) - a promising dynamic ax-shredding duo incorporating Arabic lyrical prowess - recently released a track on Youtube. Mo also is the guitarist for the band As Per Casper.

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In retrospect, like any responsible parent, the tension was all in the name of good intention — focusing on getting a degree. Fast-forward decades later, their bond as siblings is unbreakable. His band Watad (which means 'peg' in English) - a promising dynamic ax-shredding duo incorporating Arabic lyrical prowess - recently released a track on Youtube. Mo also is the guitarist for the band As Per Casper.

a genius at a very young age

More Than Just A Pretty Face.

You might have seen his poster somewhere flaunting his signature long beard as the Face of Chevrolet Middle East. Perhaps more than once or twice someone has mistaken him as the slim version of Jason Mamoa. These perks come with living in the limelight of the glittering entertainment industry. Actor and voice-over artist Mohammad Taifi lives the life of a budding superstar.

"I got a call from someone for a short photoshoot stint," recalls Taifi. What seemed to be a one-off developed into what now is a trophy under his belt. "'You have the looks, why don't you do a little acting,'" Mo recalls a manager telling him. And that which he shied away from eventually became one of his passions. Like any other blossoming venture, his new-found drive did not come exclusively exuberant. He recalls the biggest lesson learned from blindly trusting his agent getting paid less than a third of what the actual contract stated. Fortunately, everything was eventually cleared. The experience led him to conclude and dismiss the services of agents.

Sentimental Value.

A noticeable acrylic board with golden Arabic inscriptions would get anyone's attention upon entry to his humble abode slash producer's haven. "My mother passed away shortly after giving birth to me. As a reminder, my late father wrote this on this piece of board. It means I (my father) will remember my mother through my scent something like that," explains Taifi who was orphaned early in life.

Backstage

Collaboration is an integral part of his shrewd work. He has produced several astute tracks ranging from hip hop to acoustic ballads and heavy metal. Diversification has become a viable trend in the close-knit local community of music producers. Taifi proudly believes there is great potential in collaborating with artists of different genres. He has recently produced a Latin track where he also did a cameo appearance in the music video. "It was a challenging one because obviously, Latin ballad is outside of my comfort zone."

In-tune

Keeping In-tune.

Inked on his arms and shoulders are the reminders of his battle scars and it’s all as vivid an illustration as anything musical of who he is: smart, drily funny, not to be trifled with but not as fierce as he came across. Truth be told, this city is blessed to house humble creatures such as him. As the vibrant and bubbly Q&A drew to a necessary end, the conversation took a different turn — even got deeper. Before the lockdown, Taifi and his girlfriend broke up but "remained good friends." The sudden seclusion due to the imposed lockdown took a toll on his mental well-being. "I have never thought I will experience this kind of problem." Taifi considers himself to be willful — the strength of his convictions could sometimes be a pain in the rear.

When Chester of Linkin Park committed suicide in 2017, Taifi took a backlash when he posted his opinion on social media about the tragic incident. "How can you take your own life when you have everything you have ever wished for in life?"

Mental health is vital

Until he experienced something of a similar effect during the pandemic. A breakup. Lost music and acting gigs. The sudden solitary confinement. "I was in a deep hole. I hit rock bottom." It took one courageous call - a plea - to his sister that took him out of the dark path he has taken. "'I know you're not religious, but why don't you try?'" A gentle reminder from a loving sister. "I knew I needed someone bigger than me. A higher power," Taifi recalls. Fortunately, he has come out of the dreadful tunnel and echoes a different sentiment about mental health and well-being. "Reach out! Don't go through it by yourself!"