UK electro-pop duo Ooberfuse have collaborated with Iraqi priest Fr Daniel Alkhory on a new music release to celebrate the March 2021 visit of the Pope to the unsettled nation. The single “Stand Up” is available via Fretsore Records on March 5th.
London, UK /Erbil, IRAQ – As part of his visit to Iraq in March 2021, Pope Francis will visit the vacated towns of Mosul and Quaraqosh in Western Iraq and celebrate Mass in Erbil’s “Franso Hariri” stadium. His purpose: to give voice to the anxieties of the traumatised and to encourage them to remain in their ancient homelands. To commemorate the occasion and to fortify the hearts of the despairing, Iraqi priest Fr Daniel Alkhory joins forces with London band Ooberfuse to release an Electronic Dance Music song proclaiming the rule of love and the end of hatred. The single, which will be available on digital services worldwide, is now streaming exclusively on YouTube HERE
In 2014, in a bid to build a worldwide caliphate, ISIS chased embedded Western Iraq communities from their ancient homelands. Driven north, large, displaced groups set up improvised displacement camps. Their basic needs for shelter, food and water were answered by local and international humanitarian initiatives. One such initiative was run by Father Daniel Alkhory repurposing his Church and grounds to care for the traumatised fugitives.
POPE INSPIRES ELECTRONIC DANCE MUSIC COLLABORATION TO ENCOURAGE IRAQ’S DISPLACED COMMUNITIES
Fr Daniel says: “My name is Father Daniel Alkhory. I am 30 years old. I was a refugee in 2006. I received death threats from terrorist groups in 2006 and was told to leave Baghdad in 24 hours or else I would be killed with my family. That happened on the day of my 16th birthday. After that I discovered the call of God and decided to become a priest, changing my misery into ministry. In 2014 my Church became a shelter for thousands of displaced people fleeing their homes because of ISIS attacks. I work day and night to strengthen the hope in their hearts to stay in Iraq. I met Ooberfuse in 2015 and we became good friends united in our shared desire to nourish hope in the face of despair. Our song Stand Up is an anthem of encouragement and a plea for peace to prevail.”
Cherrie Anderson from Ooberfuse adds: “We met Fr Daniel in 2015 in Iraq. We were doing some improvised pop-up performances in the displacement camps run by the United Nations. We would set up our sound system and with Fr Daniel bring some respite to the traumatised. I am so happy to work on this song with together to bring encouragement and to make unheard voices more audible.”
Hal St John from Ooberfuse concludes: “There is no looking back to sadder days but only looking forwards to a brighter future. The displaced are largely returned to their homes so we are privileged to be part of Fr Daniel’s mission to sustain these fragile communities and to build their resilience. We have been working night and day to collaborate and to make our track as celebratory as possible. After a Master Class with Armin Van Buuren and some production excellence from Peter Gabriel’s Real World Studios, our collaboration Stand Up is released today. Love will rule again to end the hate that has plagued Iraq and the Middle East.”
From showcasing at The Great Escape to opening for Rudimental in Beijing, Ooberfuse have built an east-to-west reputation for their live performances, with recent tours to Japan, China, Korea, India, Philippines, Italy, Spain and Portugal. UK support has been received from BBC Radio 1’s Huw Stephens, BBC Radio London’s Sunny and Shay, and legendary trailblazers such as Boy George, Paul Oakenfold and Sister Bliss (Faithless/Ministry of Sound).
Fr Daniel Alkhory is an Iraqi priest. On his 16th birthday in 2006, he received a death threat from the terrorist groups, and had to leave Baghdad within 24 hours, otherwise he was going to be killed. He currently lives in Iraq and is a strong advocate for the persecuted Iraqis, working day and night to empower the hope in their hearts to stay in Iraq, and be the light and salt of Iraq. This is his first musical project.
Fr Daniel Alkhory’s Facebook Page HERE
Listen/stream/download the single ‘Stand Up’ HERE