‘This Feeling’ is the latest single from Syrian born pop star Wissam Hilal, and the music video has already been streamed over 1 million times on YouTube.
We had the opportunity to chat with Wissam to find out all about how he came to be where he is today, his latest single and working with top producer S-X, and also finding out if there is anyone special in his life…
Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions today, let’s start off by introducing you to our readers, could you tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to be where you are today? We notice you were born in Syria and now topping the charts in the Europe, UK and United Arab Emirates, how did that come about?
Thanks a lot for having me on your magazine. It’s an honour for me.
I was born in Syria, in a mountain small city called Sweida in the south of the country. I always had so much passion for music and big dreams. My dreams were literally larger than life back in the day. I never took “no” for an answer. I knew that the only way I’m gonna make it in the music industry is by moving to either Dubai or Lebanon. I left Syria with nothing in my pocket but with a heart full of hope, passion and faith.
It was a tough journey. The real dream started to materialize when I released my first music video with a big label here in the Middle East and North Africa (Melody Music Egypt). The video took off real fast and my life started to change since.
In 2018 I got signed by Universal Music MENA and they showed the realest love and support I’ve ever got to have. They believed in me and that’s what any artist would dream of. My first release with Universal Music was ‘Harmony’ that topped iTunes charts in the UK (Top 30 overall) and (Top 10 pop chart). Last month I released ‘This Feeling’ with Universal which is my 4th original song with the label.
Do you think your childhood experiences influence your music at all?
Sure. I had a tough childhood especially when I was teenager. I think the only way I can/could process all the hardships I’ve been through is to let it out through my music. I’m still kind of hesitant regarding releasing most of the songs I’ve written. I get really personal while writing.
Where does your passion for music come from, is there anyone that inspires or influences you?
I feel motivated whenever I hear a hit song on the radio. Like F**k I want to do something that good or even better. I don’t know how to explain my passion for music, it comes from very deep within my soul.
There are many artists that I personally like and been influenced by like Enrique Iglesias, Ricky Martin, Avril Lavigne, Michael Jackson and many others.
“At the end of the day money, looks, fame, success, social status…etc.. will fade away”
Your latest single ‘This Feeling’ went straight to #11 on iTunes in the United Arab Emirates and is now charting in many European countries like France, Italy, Netherland and Belgium, the music video has already been streamed over 1,000,000 times in a week – have you done anything to celebrate?
It is really magical to see my song go up the charts globally this fast and after only a week of the release. I feel very grateful. Thanks to my team of course. We all worked so hard for this.
I can’t do anything to celebrate in this 24/7 lockdown quarantine in Dubai other than Skyping with family and close friends. I cant complain though, the UAE government has taken great action to stop the spread of the virus. I’ll come visit London very soon so maybe we can celebrate it together! Haha
In the same breath, we see a lot of ‘celebrities’ that allow fame and success to become muddled and let it go to their heads, yet you seem really grounded, how do you stay that way when you’re clearly doing so well in your field?
I am too humbled by what God and the Universe have given me. I’ve been given way more than I think I deserve.
At the end of the day money, looks, fame, success, social status…etc.. will fade away, the only thing that a person will be remembered for is their acts of kindness to others. I came from nothing at all, I will always remember that and be nothing but humbled and grateful. Besides, I moved my family to live with me in Dubai, being around them will always make me feel like I’m the same passionate goofy young boy that left Syria with big dreams 6 years ago!
‘This Feeling’ was written and produced by S-X who achieve a #1 on iTunes in the UK with ‘Down Like That’ featuring KSI, Rick Ross and Lil Baby, and we know your worked with him on ‘Harmony’ last year, what is it like working with such a powerhouse of talent?
S-X is one of the realest kindest artists I’ve ever known. He’s shown me so much support that I’ll forever be grateful for. Working with him is one of the best things that happened to me in my career. Very talented, modest man. Not to mention I’m a big fan of his music. Truly love the guy.
In the second verse of ‘This Feeling’ you sing “I can’t hold on for much longer, girl I’ve got love to give” – dare we ask if there is a special lady that you’re singing to with that line, or can our readers swoon over your handsome bachelor charm?
Oh man, that’s very sweet, thank you. I’m very private about my love life. I don’t like when the tabloids make up stories that aren’t true and publish them to live forever on the internet. I became very careful about talking or sharing anything about my relationships lately. But Aaron, we can text later privately and I’ll tell you all about it. ’wink’
Haha, I can’t wait and completely respect your privacy, I think I would be the same, so tell me, what’s next for you? We know you’ve got some big plans to go global, can you tell us anything about that?
Me, my team in the US and my Universal Music MENA family are all working and doing our best to promote the new music. It’s all about the team work. I’m blessed to have such a support system.
I’m so excited that ‘This Feeling’ music video has already started airing on MTV France and MTV latin America in the first week of the release. Hoping for more global TV airing.
I have also recorded a Spanish record with Latin-Grammy member and Billboard Magazine Vzla CEO Mr (Leonardo Lanz). It’s a pop Spanish summer banger that I cannot wait to shoot and release. It’s my first time performing in Spanish.