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Homegrown Artists Drive Morocco’s Hip-hop Scene

When you turn on Moroccan trap star Issam Harris’ latest video, “Nike,” it’s best to throw all conventional expectations out the window. There’s no joyful rapping trumpeting the legendary sports brand, nor high fashion. Instead, Nike pays tribute to Moroccans’ obsession with branding everything they own — from tires to djellabas — that has nothing to do with the product itself or even knowledge of the brand. “Moroccans don’t have much money, but it’s in the culture to wear brands, not fashion,” says the Casablanca native. “Nike” is also a peek into Harris’ vivid imagination — he wrote and composed the song as well as co-directed the video — where daily life in Morocco meets dystopian surrealism.