With the mission of promoting the positive values of Islam through his music, Zaher and his musical partner Jae Deen aim to build pride within the Muslim community while also challenging the misconceptions about the global religion.
Having launched his first music videos just a few years back, Zaher has definitely come a long way. With more than 1 million followers on Facebook, and having recently opened for Justin Bieber in Dubai, Zaher has built a global fan base.
We talked with Zaher about Deen Squad, becoming a viral sensation and what it felt like opening for the infamous Bieber.
How did you get your start?
"I started social media with the objective of being a voice of inspiration. I always dreamt of making positive music that could help people overcome their struggles."
Did you anticipate that you'd reach such a massive audience?
"I always believed, ever since I was a kid, that I would be recognized as an influential role model. And working with Deen Squad is what allowed me to attain heights I couldn't [have] envisioned."
What do you hope to achieve through your music?
"I want my music to inspire people, to allow them to think in a profound way. I want my lyrics to help people take initiative to get up and follow their dreams while staying true to their origins."
With so many misconceptions about Arabs and Muslims, do you feel your music can help change the narrative?
"Deen Squad has definitely been the platform which has cleared up many misconceptions about Muslims to millions of people around the world. The goal is definitely to break down all negative stereotypes about Islam and to educate people about how positive our religion is."
How do you feel as an Arab Muslim living in the West, with all the stereotypes and Islamophobia, right now?
"It used to affect me, but now I'm over it and I feel like the world is starting to realize that the media exaggerates the entire plot in regards to Muslims."
Back to your music, what have been some of the biggest moments for you?
"My biggest music moment was when we trended worldwide with our Muslim Man video, making it on news outlets across the entire world. The positive impact felt so real!"
Do you ever get hate for your music? How do you respond?
"We don't bother explaining ourselves to closed minded individuals. We just know our music is changing the youth's lives and we're here to fulfill our purpose regardless of whoever criticizes or tries standing in the way."
You recently opened for Justin Bieber in Dubai. How was that?
"Opening up for Justin Bieber was absolutely historical and definitely built up our confidence. It came to our realization that our music is definitely revolutionary and we have what it takes to reach extremely high altitudes."
You're family is from Lebanon. How often do you get to visit?
"I miss Lebanon so much, I haven't been there for a very long time but I definitely plan on paying my country a visit this exact year.
My parents are there every single summer and tell me how our garden in the village is filled with every fruit and vegetable that I can think of. When I go to Lebanon, I love being at the beach, I'm literally addicted to the water, the sand and soaking up the sun. My tan game strong!"