Despite national and international outcry, the Egyptian government has begun to demolish the 30 remaining historic houseboats on the riverside ... of the Nile in Giza, Cairo, citing a lack of registration. The move has angered residents and activists who accuse the state of erasing an important part of the country’s identity from its Golden Age era.
1. Humble origins
William Sami Étienne Grigahcine (his birth name) was born in 1986 in Paris to a French showman father – who left home when he was only two years old – and an Algerian mother – who had a series of odd jobs (nanny, cleaning lady) and brought up William and his younger brother on her own in a low-income housing estate in Ermont in the Val d’Oise.
He often talks about his background in interviews and says that the multicultural environment in which he grew up has influenced his musical universe.
“In my building, there were Haitians listening to Kompa, Antilleans listening to zouk, Arabs listening to raï…,” he said in an interview with Konbini.