Artist: Maryam Mursal
It's hard to get bumpier than the road Somali singer Maryam Marsal traveled to find success in the music world. Originally one of the first professional female performers of the Muslim faith, Marsal hit a roadblock when the political aspect of her lyrics led to her music being banned from her homeland. Later forced to flee the country when a civil war broke out, the artist and her children traversed the African deserts for seven months, before finding the Danish refugee camp where she was discovered as a singer. THE JOURNEY was produced by Simon Emmerson and Martin Russell of Afro Celt Sound System, and as such, the music is a blend of Marsal's Somali traditions and UK ethnic fusion. The grooves are exotic Afro-pop, often displaying a striking Middle Eastern flair, alongside drums, guitars and Marsal's rich vocals.