Benyamin Benyamin

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My name is Benyamin Benyamin Dmar-Beshu. I was born in Iraq (Musoul Dawwasa)  from mother Dalilah Rowil Tamras Benyamin and my father is Aprim Paul Benyamin Dmar-Beshu. My Dad was an Author, story teller, he use to write stories & poetries & speeches and also he was an illumination artist. I went to school in Baghdad from first grade to fourth grade. I went to a Nun’s school called, Kaldanian Nun school, camp Al-Geylany and then my father transferred me to Qasha Kando’s school, the school was called" Takadom private school".

In this school, I discovered I had a talent for music. I come from a line of very talented people from my mother’s side. My youngest uncle is a well known singer by the name of Albert Rowil Tamras. I was a member in a small music group and dance on stage as well as Assyrian drama in my school. I use to present poetries also on the stage in 1956. My last year of grammar school I had a crush on one of my classmates by the name of" Aleena" and from that crush came the first song that I wrote just for her. The name of the song was ((Allina)) but later on I changed it to ((Kha-Yona)).

From that moment on I discovered my love for music and I started writing songs in Assyrian, because in Grammar school all my classmates were Assyrian, so that is why I was writing song in Assyrian and putting them to music. I went on to high school and continued writing music. And now my status changed, I would write songs for my friends in Arabic. Because all my classmates were Arab, My idol was" Abdil Haleem Hafeth", I use to sing his songs and my friends would call me and have me sing Abdil Haleem songs to their girlfriends. I would use every opportunity I could to sing. I would sing on long school trips, during recess, and also in school plays. I wrote my first long story and it was called “The First Love.” in Arabic, It is over 1,000 page long, the story include number of my songs lyrics & music by me, and I planned to make a movie for it, I went to Colombia college in Chicago and spoke to one of the directors, he said it will cost me over $7,000 so I didn't have enough funds for the movie but, I had a bunch of people they decide to work with me in the movie for free, and" also photo Ninva" Mr. Fraydon Enviya decide to do filming for the movie for free too, but later on I change my mind, because I was looking for better quality for this Movie. I made it for TV. Station, I hope I will make it happen as an Assyrian Movie some day. I also wrote many songs and poetries in Arabic as well and submitted them to the Iraqi radio station but unfortunately they didn't pass the test, However, I didn’t give up. And also I wrote three TV. Programs, and submitted them to the Iraqi's TV. Station, they pass all the tests, but when they went to the Manager's office, he put them to be in the file room. And also I applied to the Iraqi Radio Station as a singer, I pass the test, but the person who test me" Mr. Sameer Al-Baghdady", he advice me to stay away from this job as a singer because, he said" this job doesn't go along with your education" because the other people were applied for this job, they weren't educated people, so I took his advice and thank him for his advice. I had talent also in broadcasting, I record more than one show from parts of my life and made them like a radio show, and also I work in one of the Iraqi's movies Co. In 1962 ((Kitawy Movie Co.)) I was in one of their movies called ((Country Love)) but they sold the movie to a different Co. Which they change the title to (Afrah & Bader).

After high school I went to Mahad Al-derasat Al-Nagameeya Al-Iraqi, it was a Music Institute Academy and also I was their Head Art comity Representative. I was in the first group in the Academy and also I was the first Assyrian student to be in this Academy, the first time that this Academy opened in 1969, the Academy was for six years but I attend the Academy for two years and would have received my High Diploma in the Arts but it didn’t happen because there were new students that attended and tried pushing everyone into politics which I didn’t like, but I was continue to practice my talent in music. I preformed in their year end ceremony, I did a play and also I sang an Arabic song" Kam yardily" and also I had the first Interview with bunch of the students in the Academy and also I had Interview with Mr. Salim Al-Alusee" the Music History teacher, a well known person on Iraqi's TV, and also I had the first Interview with Iraqi singer" Mr. Salah Abdul-Gafur" when he was a student in the Academy, that was the first one for him as a singer before he came on the Radio as a singer, also I had record on tape the first trip that the Academy had, trip was to the Mosul ((Al-Hather)). And about the year end ceremony, the media that attended the ceremony wrote about my performance in their articles. There was also another student that preformed with me as well and we both got to be in their paper for our performances under" Born two new voices in the Academy". One of my neighbours asked me one day why I didn’t sing Assyrian songs instead of Arabic, I thought about that, however I couldn’t perform anymore in the Academy due to the fact that the Music Academy was turning towards politics which I didn't like. I left Iraq shortly after that on December 27, 1973 and moved to Lebanon; there I wrote a number of songs in Assyrian, and the first song was ((My love)) which it is on my profile you can listen to it. I left to Chicago on April 28th, 1975. My first project was that I performed during a New Years Eve club party with Walter Aziz on the Lake Shore Drive with" Heart Beat Band" and present song ((Mu Oden)). In Chicago, my talent started growing. I started writing more songs and my second project; I gave one of my songs to Sargon Gabriel which was titled “Yellow Dress” which became a hit song among the Assyrian community in the seventy's. I also gave him a song for his 1st LP which was titled “Aturaya” and that was the reason he put "Ituraea" the title for his LP, and beside "Yellow Dress" I wrote another song for" Sargon Gabriel" it was called “Candles” along with "Yellow Dress" which was for his next tape, I created a band called" Qetara Band" in 1979 in Chicago, with Malik Merza, and the members of the band were Wilson Knanishoo on the drums, Eyo Oshana was on the keyboard, Azad Khamo was on the lead guitar, Neyaz Khamo was on the bass guitar. I also performed with Malak Merza on lots of occasions, weddings and parties, and in the Assyrian Convention with Malik Merza in 1979. I went on to write songs for Zannder David “Briydel Eille,” Malik Merza “Gubareh” and Marlin Koshaba "Pshiana".

After Assyrian Artist Club opened I became one of their Club members and later on I was member in their club comity, and I present a radio show by the name of “Khitara Magazine" it was an air Magazine, and I performed in their parties and I was also the host to all their social events as well. I presented a new show on their radio, a “request live show" where people could call in and request songs for people on certain occasions. I even was the host of the radio program for all their air time and I presented for the first time in Chicago in Assyrian Drama Radio history a play under title ((Sharira)) it was over seven parts and also I played the part of "Sharira" in it, and it became a hit with the audience. And also I had interview with a lot of Assyrian Stars ((Singers)) live one ,with Fatin Shabu, Julyana Jandu and Ogen Shmuel and, Shawel Mallko, King Biba, and may be the only interview with" King Biba " ever had on the radio and he gave me his own two copies of his cassettes with all his song, gift from him to me, and also a lot of interviews on the air with " Ashur Sargis" "Shameram" "Jermian Tamras",during this time I also became a member of the Assyrian Church of the East in Mar Gewargis Church in Chicago. As I said before I became a member of Mar Gewargis Church choir, I sang solo and also with a group, and also I was the host for their radio Church show, and also the host of their Youth radio show too with my son" Stuart", and I wrote many songs for the youth and the most famous one was in 1985 “Ya Akonee". and also I put the music for Church kids songs" we are the kids", My Dad "Aprim Paul Benyamin" wrote the first Oparret lyrics and I added the melody to it the title was "The Lost Sheep." The second Oparret was called "Between Two Families" lyrics by Rabe Jule Reahana Khasha and I just added the melody for that one. I also added melody for the first time in Assyrian History for a big Oparret which was “Oparret Nursing Home” by Rabe Jule Reahana Khasha, which was directed by Eabby Sargis, he had never directed any oparret in his life, this was the first time he was attempting it and I played part in all these Oparrets. The Holy Mar Dinkha was so busy that time, but he said he would plan to see the play and he did. He came in the middle of the play, he asked to repeat it, and we did. I preformed in a lot of occasions in Chicago, I sang and present speeches and played drama and host a lot of party events and Weddings in Chicago. The Mar-Sargis Church Choir invited me to sing solo on a tape they were recording for Easter, and Rabi Julie David thanked me for that for the song and had it on the tape.

My first video clip was a song called “A Golden Person” lyrics were written by Ninos Nerary and melody by me with "Marlin Khawshaba" with" Assyrian around the world TV.” and Video Clip for song "13th. Of the month “with Bet Nahrain TV. and the tour was to Modesto, California. I had an interview me and Roula Adam with Bet Nahrain TV. station I taped Video Clips for my songs, about five songs with Roula Adam and one of the hits songs was “Klapook Welee Yalla” and it is on my profile you can listen to it, and about the tours, we had to go to Canada- London to present the oparret "between to families lyrics by Rabe" Jule Reahana Khasha" and Music by me and I had part in that oparret, before that my music project was first tape “Dream” with Marlen Khoshaba and second voice by Dannis Tamras, cassette with eight songs, the hit song was" Birthday" song in 1986 and also the song it is on my profile you can listen to it and in 1996 I had the second project ,was also a cassette called “Innocent Love” with Roula Adam. I worked with my first band “Kettara” which I sang with Malik Merza together and we sang first in Chicago convention in 1979. In 1999 on the 28th of July I moved to Phoenix Arizona, and Bishop "Mar Aprim Khamis "asked me to take over the Church choir at" ST. Peter Church". I accepted his offer and made a lot of changes and improvements with the Choir and we performed together as a choir on different occasions. I will spend the rest of my life in Arizona, I love it and I am working now on the fourth project which is a CD with (12) songs by the name of “Love and Peace” with Marlene Kotara and my daughter Miriam Benyamin, It is a religious anthem and youth CD. I hope you will enjoy the CD and all the songs. With all the love to all who love my work and to all the Assyrians all over the world.

In April 16th 1977 I got married to Margaret Romans Adam and I had two sons, Stuart Benyamin from American Idol who sang in Assyrian and he has his own CD titled (Atoraya) and George who enjoys playing soccer and American football.
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