Background and education
Aleph was born in Ehmej, Lebanon. He discovered music at the age of 3 when he was given a small old wooden piano. Reconstructing familiar tunes from such an early age, he was able to grasp occidental melodies while oriental tunes eluded him. He persevered and finally discovered what was missing: the "quarter tone", a basis of oriental music. His parents who saw his potential finally got him his first "real" piano.
Passionate about sounds, Aleph wanted to express Oriental melodies through an Occidental instrument, the piano, with no artifice or subterfuge. During the Lebanese Civil War, Aleph and his family left their hometown for the mountains to seek peace. Aleph spent all of his time in his uncle's studio. His uncle Michael Ramia is a composer who had mastered more than 8 instruments and has been a great influence on him. His days were dedicated to training and entertaining, being the main attraction at all family festivities alongside his cousin Carla Ramia which sang Arabic at an early age, and does so till present day.
At the age of 11, Aleph started composing his own music.
Aleph Graduated in 1999 from Collège Saint Joseph – Antoura. In order to perfect his technique he enrolled in Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (USEK) and studied piano theory and harmony. Aleph graduated as valedictorian n Music Theory from Kaslik and in Music Listening and Harmony from the Kharkiv Conservatory.
Even though Aleph is self-taught, he gracefully acknowledges that his "academic detours" have provided his art with the necessary classical and technical basis.)
At the age of 8, he interpreted a song from Umm Kulthum for the Music Day, and at age 10, played with a Tunisian orchestra in the Byblos Citadel and by age 11, he had many appearances in the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (USEK) having to present pieces for his classical program. He took this opportunity to present his own compositions as well.
At 14, he gave his first solo concert, playing Chopin's Mazurkas in his own arrangement. and at the age of 18, gave a concert in his college theatre (College St Joseph Aintoura) where he performed his own compositions.
At the age of 18, a friend introduced him to Elef Productions, a former Warner Music Group label. Right from the start, Michel Elefteriades saw his uniqueness and started working with him on a solo project.
In 2001, at only 21 years old, Aleph "Le Piano de l'Orient", was chosen to head the show for three consecutive days at the Byblos international Festival, – Mediterraneo, a stepping stone for his international career, beginning with a North African Tour in collaboration with his long time friend Michel Labex Labaki. After that came the collaborations with many esteemed artists such as: EL Chato, Isabelle Laroche, Damien Barneata, Jose Fernandez, Demis Roussos, Peggy Pavlakis, Selim Sesler, Relou Mirea, Son Cubano, Tino Favazza, Tony Hanna, Wadih el Safi, The Greeks vs. Turkish, Oriental Roots Orchestra, Yugoslavian Brass Band...
In 2003 while performing, he caught the eye of a representative of the esteemed Steinway Pianos and became one of the Steinway Artists. Working with Elef Productions, he was part of the opening team of the Music Hall located in the city center of Beirut, Lebanon. Being the main pianist and arranger of the Music Hall musical acts up until 2006, he focused not only on world fusion music but also pop, ethnic, Bel canto and many other genres.
From 2002 till 2004 he worked on his first album Baladi that was going to be produced by Elef Productions. They worked at Georges El Safi Studios in Jdeideh and Raymond Khalife Studios in Ballouneh. The album originally included traditional Lebanese songs fused with non-oriental music. Unfortunately the album was not released due to contract disputes.
After that Aleph fully dedicated himself to 8e Art Entertainment, an entertainment company he founded with his brother Pierre Abi Saad in 2003. As 8e Art's Art Director, Aleph created and managed many groups of different styles such as Aleph's Big Band, The 8e Art Parade, Dia Quintet, L'Orient Andalou, The Lounge Hank, Big R Abian, 8 Rox, Screen Legends, Loud Arabia, X Band, 8 Walks, Kanj Workshop, The Brain, The Redz, The Classical Tribute, Vertical orchestra etc. These groups have participated in both local and international events and concerts. The Lounge Hank and Aleph also work in the TV business being the musicians of the well-known Arabic version of This Is How We Sing (or Heik Menghanni) on Lebanese Murr Television (MTV), a prime time show aired on the station on Saturday nights.
Aleph recorded his first single "Vaya Maria" which he composed after the birth of his daughter Vaya. The song also appeared on Michel Labex Labaki first album Bass which was presented at the Namm show 2012.
In 2014, Aleph began recording songs, which he composed and arranged, for his new album at Musigrama Estudios Madrid in October 2014, these songs featured well-known Spanish artists, Antonio Serrano, Jose Luis Lopez Fernandez, Yelsy Heredia, Paquito Gonzalez amongst others. Aleph is also the Editor in Chief of WeConfess Magazine, based on music events and artists of the 8e Art Roster.
Aleph's company, 8e Art Entertainment, in collaboration with Bacchus Production, the leading event lighting experts & suppliers in the country, created two editions of the very successful local concerts; Dedications (I & II).
Aleph held a solo concert at the prestigious Olympia in Paris on the 28th of May 2016. The concert was Sold out bringing together people from all over the world. After the success of Aleph's concert in Paris. The show returned due to popular demand. The concert was held on home soil on July 3 at the Dbayeh International Festival in Lebanon.
Aleph took part in the Musiques Epicees Festival in France on the 4th & 5th of August. He was accompanied on stage by several French instrumentalists to a crowd of 3000 people at Saint-Aulaye. Presenting a special collection of tunes, from oriental to Latin, and a fusion of both, Latin-Oriental.
Activism and ideologies
Aleph is a supporter of many charity associations. He has participated in the organizing of many fund raising events for the Lebanese Red Cross, The Children Cancer Center, Tamana, Em el Nour, Teach a Child, Rotary and many others. In 2014 he founded "Les Pianos du Coeur”. It brings together pianists from all over the world to share a stage. The goal of this project is to finally offer all the funds to a non-profit organization. Each year the funds will be given to a different charity organization.