Multi-Talented ‘Poet of Colors’ Magdy Naguib (1936-2024) Mesmerized Music Composers and Singers of Egypt’s Musical Golden Age

Elie Chalala
Artwork by Magdy Naguib and a 2019 photograph of Magdy Naguib.
The widespread reach of the Egyptian song and its artistic achievements, going beyond the Arab sphere to the rest of the world, owes its success to musicians, singers, and poets whose writings remain immortal today. Among them is the poet Magdy Naguib, who departed from the cultural scene on February 7, 2024, reports Al Habeeb Al Aswad in Al Arab newspaper. Hardly a moment goes by without news of the Arab cultural scene losing an artist, poet, songwriter, or other creative. The latest is Egyptian writer Magdy Naguib (1936-2024), a poet, children’s book author, lyric songwriter, and visual artist whose poems were acknowledged by significant composers and sung by major stars in the 1960s and 1970s. 
The conditions that led to Naguib’s death are heart-wrenching. He had reportedly been recovering from a previous heart attack. His health, which deteriorated further due to a medical error that required him to be admitted into intensive care, was exacerbated by the death of his son last May. His health condition further worsened after he suffered another heart attack, causing him to enter a state of extreme sadness, according to the London-based Al-Arab newspaper.
Even before his death, rumors of Naguib’s passing had spread while he was still in good health. Media sources like the Egyptian newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm played a hand in carrying out one of these rumors. Some attributed the cause of the rumors to Naguib’s refusal to appear in the media, whether on satellite channels or in newspapers, for over a decade. Perhaps in response, or by the miracle work of his wife and some friends, he was convinced to appear before the Egyptian public in March 2018, a scene that garnered much nostalgia, according to Ihab Mahmoud in Diffah 3.
Excerpted from "Multi-Talented ‘Poet of Colors’ Magdy Naguib (1936-2024) Mesmerized Music Composers and Singers of Egypt’s Musical Golden Age” by Elie Chalala, scheduled to appear in the forthcoming Al Jadid, Vol. 28, No. 85, 2024.
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