Marwan Parham is used to playing other people’s tunes.
But from next week the Dubai spinner, know to UAE revellers as DJ Bliss, will be in the new position of being a bona fide artist in his own right.
Parham is set to release his debut video Let it Go, co-starring the Canadian rapper Kardinal Offishall.
“This is really strange for me,” Parham admits. “I am not used to answering questions because I am normally the one asking them.”
As well as DJing and MCing, Parham is also the host of Dubai One’s flagship entertainment programme That’s Entertainment, a job that had him spend last week on the red carpet of the Dubai International Film Festival.
The 30-year-old, who has been a DJ for a decade, says he is now ready to shine on his own.
“It is a natural step,” he says. “I started off doing high-school parties, then it turned into getting into radio and then professional DJing and now doing television and hosting events. It has always been a progression for me.”
Despite the release, Parham has no plans for an album – not yet, anyway.
“I haven’t thought about that far,” he said. “Just from my artist friends. They are like, ‘don’t worry about an album and focus on the singles’.”
Despite the many hats, Parham remains a true hip-hop head.
In Let it Go, he follows a fundamental hip-hop rule: repping your city.
The video clip finds both Parham and Offishall cruising in cars checking out the best of Dubai, from the Burj Khalifa and the malls to The Walk.
“We even had a helicopter over the city to see what’s going on,” Parham says. “We also shot at a hotel on The Palm. The whole song is about living the good life in Dubai, from driving nice cars to the city and the sun. It is a fun song, but nothing serious.”
That said, for such a fun and frivolous track Parham was blown away by the professionalism displayed by Offishall.
After hooking up with the rapper in 2009 on Offishall’s first UAE visit, the duo developed a friendship that extended to Parham offering him a guest slot on the single.
Parham says Offishall’s lyrics more than fulfilled the brief.
“He sent it back within a week,” he says.
“Kardinal has only been here once and he picked up on so many things about Dubai that when he did the song, you would think he lives here.”
Any hip-hop video wouldn’t be complete without some fresh clothes and bling.
Let it Go has a few eye-popping watches and jewellery supplied by Mahallati Jewellery while Parham was clothed by Dsquared2.
While he is looking forward to the audience reaction, Parham is already gearing up for a busy 2013 where he and Offishall will play a few promotional shows.
“We wanted to tour about it both locally and regionally,” he says. “My plan is to keep aiming high.”
DJ Bliss’s Let it Go, featuring Kardinal Offishall, is due out next week. For details visit www.djbliss.com