BERKELEY, California, Jun 4 (IPS) - As Iran’s conservative president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad fights for his political future against two reformist challengers in the June elections, Arash Sobhani, a lead figure in the country’s underground music scene, says it’s a very tough time to be an artist in Iran.
“At the beginning of his [Ahmadinejad’s] first term [in 2005] there were still a few notable musicians who thought they should stay and try to work inside Iran and try to make things better little by little, like they had done for the past 26 years, but Ahmadinejad proved them wrong,” Sobhani told IPS.
Sobhani is the lead singer and songwriter of Kiosk, a band that is widely popular among Iranians inside and outside of the country. With its Mark Knopfler musical style and politically sharp and ironic lyrics, Kiosk is considered one of the most influential underground rock bands to emerge since the 1979 Iranian Revolution. Read more