Samia Malik


Hailed as a ’powerful new voice’, Samia Malik’s ‘uncompromising’ yet ‘hauntingly beautiful’ lyrics weave tabla, violin, tanpura, keyboards, bass guitar with the sitar and dilruba of the world-renowned ‘virtuoso multi-instrumentalist’ Baluji Shrivastav OBE.

Writing from her perspective as a British Asian woman from a Pakistani/Muslim background, Samia extends and subverts the traditional Urdu Ghazal form to tackle contemporary issues ranging from revolution to race to love to liberation to sexual politics to child abuse to Bollywood: hers is a ‘personal and yet universal’ voice of our times, a courageous, inspirational and beautiful fusion of musical styles and languages.

Samia began studying classical Indian vocal with the eminent Baluji Shrivastav OBE in 1989. Her first compositions were with the poetry of We Sinful Women (The Women's Press 1991) translated and edited by Rukhsana Ahmad - a bilingual anthology of contemporary feminist writing by women in Pakistan, including Kishwar Naheed, Fahmida Riaz, Sara Shegufta, Zehra Nigah and Ishrat Aafreen, Feeling these poems, though powerful and inspiring, did not explore her own experiences of growing up in the UK, Samia began writing her own songs loosely based on the Ghazal form, in both Urdu and English. She released her first album The Colour of the Heart in 1998, and Jaago - Wake up in 2014.

Samia has toured her work throughout the UK, in Europe with her bands, across India with the celebrated dancer and activist Mallika Sarabhai. A solo tour of Azaadi: Freedom 2016  led to her current touring show with her new live band across the UK, and the release of her third album Azaadi: Freedom.



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Page updated May 2017