An Artist for the Ages
Opium Sabbah brings a rich and diverse musical legacy to his music. Son of the legendary Cheb i Sabbah, Opium Sabbah was raised listening to the spiritually rich and exotic music of India and North Africa. He watched and listened as his father pioneered a new genre of world music, and was introduced to musicians, vocalists and producers who would later influence his own musical career, such as Shukhwat Ali Khan, Cheb Khaled, Hassan Hakmoun, and many others. However, growing up in San Francisco, California would introduce Opium Sabbah to Hip-Hop culture, and Rap Music, where Opium first emerged as a graffiti artist, then as an Emcee with the local fledgling group Criminal Minded Playaz in the mid 1990’s in San Francisco. Opium would continue to perform and record music as both a solo artist and in collaboration with other artists for the next 15 years, making waves with local collar hits such as “My Kinda Love” (Ferenheight: Global Warming, 2008), and making an impression on stage in venues from San Francisco to Morocco to India, performing alongside artists such as Raekwon and DJ Quick.
Opium Sabbah’s most recent work is without doubt his most important to date. A collaboration with his late father, “Freedom is Free” is a labor of love, and a once-in-a-lifetime partnership between father and son. Set to release June 2015, and featuring artists such as Mandeep Sethi, the Midival Punditz, and produced by Cheb i Sabbah himself, “Freedom is Free” aims to make a unique impact on the music scene.
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Not to be thought purely as a solo artist, but a part of a global network and movement as a member of the group “216” with all North African members, and “Ferenheight” an SF Bay Area rap group with a growing fan base and regular live performances, Opium not only takes command when performing solo, but also contributes to the overall development of hip-hop music worldwide.
Opium derives inspiration and motivation from people as diverse as Soul's of mischief,Hiero, Eminem, and Cheb i Sabbah. Yukmouth, Salif Keita, Mobb Deep, Hasan Hakmoun, Khaled, Bally Sagoo, Rashid Taha, Mac Dre, Andre Nickatina...