Hanni El Khatib
About Hanni El Khatib
Under the loose banner of rock & roll, San Francisco native Hanni El Khatib incorporates a panoply of raucous sounds and textures into his music, touching on blues, folk, indie rock, garage, punk, and even hardcore rap. He emerged in the early part of the 2010s, presenting a minimalist, but visceral guitar-and-drums combo, earning accolades for his Dan Auerbach-produced second album, Head in the Dirt, in 2013. He continued to evolve over the next several years, melding a strong visual aesthetic with wide-ranging musical exploits, especially on his 2017 LP, Savage Times. A singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and visual artist, Khatib records for Bay Area indie Innovative Leisure, where he also serves as creative director and co-owner.
A first generation American born to a Palestinian father and Filipino mother, Khatib spent much of his youth as a San Francisco skate rat and became deeply involved in the visual art and design around skateboard culture. Before his music career took off, he worked as the creative director for the HUF skate and surfwear brand. As a musician, he built his sound around fiery rock & roll guitar work that sometimes resembled the grungy blues of Jon Spencer with a spiky punk attitude. He made his debut in 2010 with a pair of singles released on Innovative Leisure. His reputation quickly grew and in 2011 Khatib landed an opening slot for Florence + the Machine before eventually releasing his full-length debut, Will the Guns Come Out.
For his next album, El Khatib teamed up with producer (and Black Keys member) Dan Auerbach, who added a new level of polish to his 2013 sophomore effort, Head in the Dirt. One of its songs, "Can't Win 'Em All," was used in a widely seen Audi commercial that was aired during the Super Bowl.
After a year of heavy touring, he returned in early 2015 with his self-produced third album, Moonlight, which saw him stretching out and playing more instruments. His fourth album, Savage Times, would prove to be somewhat of a creative breakout for Khatib. Released in early 2017, the 19-track album ran the gamut from punk to disco to solo guitar and was packaged in a limited-edition box set of three 10" records. After taking a break from music to start his own skate design company, Khatib returned in 2020 with, Flight, a dynamic, riffy collection co-produced with Leon Michels. ~ Gregory Heaney
HOMETOWNSan Francisco , CA
BORNJune 8, 1981