-The Esquire 100 - Issam Freiha
As far as music monikers go, icekream, is a curious one — but the story behind it is rather endearing.
Long before Freiha became an EDM/Trap music producer, the UAE national spent his childhood in France, where sound of French hip-hop helped shape his musical taste. With his classmates having trouble pronouncing his Arabic name, Issam became ‘ice cream’ – and it has stuck since he first started out as a turntable DJ at just 13-years-old.
In an increasingly relatable story of people raised internationally, his multi-cultural upbringing has come to define his sound, and appeal to audiences regardless of geography.
“Music production is the ideal means to express myself. Nothing gives me more satisfaction. Although, truth be told, it took me a decade to figure out that making music was not just a passion, but a career I could pursue professionally,” says Freiha. That fearless passion and taste for an experimental sound was noticed by the two-time Grammy Award winning duo Cool & Dre, who signed icekream to their record label in the US.
He has since collaborated with Eric Leon, who worked with (former Esquire coverstar) DJ Khaled, Wyclef Jean and Diplo, and as this month will be releasing his new digital EP, ‘Night Feel’, with Saudi musician Majeed