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Ronin & Nesta

Beirut, Lebanon House Deep House Tech House Indie Dance / Nu Disco +3

Beirut has been many things to many people over the last century, but thanks to a devoted team of industry players - including whirlwind DJ tag team Ronin and Nesta - the city has become a hotbed of house music.

Separately they are Ronald Hajjar and Nabih Esta, marketing manager and student by day, but together they are Ronin and Nesta, a disco-destroying duo who have cemented Beirut's place on the global clubbing map.

The pair originally met through a mutual friend in Paris, who hooked the then teenagers up online. They soon bonded over a shared love for electronic music, began playing at the same parties in Beirut and later merged their radio shows to create Beirut In the Mix - a pulsating, back-to-back mix of underground sounds ranging from deep house to big room twisted tech. The show quickly escalated into a fully fledged party brand and artist collective, while the radio show - now as a top ranked podcast on iTunes too - was picked up by the region's largest radio station Mix FM for a prime-time slot, airing at 8pm every Saturday and featuring monthly guests such as Maceo Plex, Josh Wink, Adam Port, Deetron, Djebali, Terry Francis and more.

From there, Ronin and Nesta's career has skyrocketed. They were picked up by DJ Magazine as up-and-coming heroes (ranked number 6 in DJ Mag Middle East’s poll for best DJ of 2010) and have notched up Middle East air-miles traveling to Syria, Jordan, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait (no, really), France, Spain and Germany. But their biggest gigs have come in Dubai. Earmarked as Lebanese house ambassadors, the duo were chosen to close out Sandance - twice - a 20,000 strong dance festival featuring, among others Armand Van Helden, 2ManyDJs, Roger Sanchez, Sander Kleinenberg and Zero 7. After impressing with their show-stopping, adrenaline-charged set, Ronin and Nesta were invited in 2012 to the notorious Creamfields Festival in Abu Dhabi, rocking the house arena as well as the Red Bull Silent Disco tent.

The duo haven't just been rocking it in the Middle East however. They commandeered their own Beirut In The Mix truck at the Paris Technoparade in september with guest DJ friends Mismatch and Wehbba, touring their new sound through a crowd that neared half a million.

Closer to home however, Ronin and Nesta have supported the great and very, very good of the international DJ scene. And even an impromptu storm couldn't stop them stealing the limelight at the Digweed and Timo Maas headlined Bedrock space night. Showing they're equally adept at DIY as DJing, the pair grabbed a handful of big bags, covered the decks and mixer and carried on playing in a huge summer squall to the delight of the 10,000 strong crowd.

Other DJ highlights including playing alongside Josh Wink, Dubfire, Danny Howells, John Digweed, Shonky, Marc Houle, James Zabiela, Paco Osuna, Tiesto, Tolga Fidan, Paul Van Dyk, Marco Carola, Nicholas, Robert Dietz, Magda, Jim Rivers, Tiger & Woods, Hernan Cattaneo, Alex Picone, Davide Squillace, Djebali, Troy Pierce, Satoshi Tomiie, Carl Cox, Sasha and virtually every other DJ in the RA and DJ Mag Top 100. But their most memorable gig of the last year? Lee Burridge's 6 hour deep, groove-laden set at legendary Beirut bunker B018. Then again, perhaps it's no surprise that they look to Burridge's infectious energy, as the Lebanese-born duo rarely have anything but a 1000 Watt grin plastered to their faces when playing.

Like the fresh-faced duo, their music tastes have matured nicely with initial preferences for filtered French house and electro making way for a fresh take on the nu-school deep and tech house genre; following new school up and coming producers, the pair have helped push a vibrant and kinetic deep house and disco sound for the past few years; digging into slower, sultrier grooves and opening up a world of downright sexy pleasures.

And it's a sound that they take around Beirut with them on a weekly basis. With their residency at DJ Mag Top 100 club The Basement ended in 2010, Ronin and Nesta are guests at virtually every club in the region and are residents for the big-name Mix FM parties that dominate the city. Not only that, but the duo are Beirut's first ambassadors for Dance4Life and UNFPA Let's Talk, fund-raising charities dedicated to tackling AIDS and HIV around the world, have featured and promoted regional Circoloco, Bedrock, Toolroom Knights, Cadenza, Supermartxé, Ministry of Sound and Global Underground nights, and currently established their Groove Republic residency at Beirut's überhaus with fellow DJ Phil, striving nightly to keep warm deep house alive and inviting cutting edge artists from all 4 corners of the world!

With a dedicated fully-fledged production studio ready, the boys see their first productions released on Diagonal Music, Hypergroove and Family Matters Records with more to come for the months ahead, carving themselves an enviable reputation. Meanwhile, the tag-team duo are making the most of Beirut, a city that's alternatively a thriving cultural hub, a city riven yet united by political and religious differences and the hottest property on the Middle East house market.

“One of the most ambitious tag-team duos in the middle east”
DJ Magazine

“Beirut Own DJ darlings”
The Daily Star

“Dedicated players in Beirut clubbing scene”
Time Out Beirut

"Two of Beirut best exports"
Infusion Magazine


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