This week we will be looking at Religion and Music, and specifically at how contemporary Muslim artists are using music to communicate ideas about religious community and identity. We will draw on this week's reading, "A New Research Agenda: Exploring Transglobal Hip Hop Umma" by H. Samy Alim, which explores how hip Hop is being used to bring cohesion across cultures to Muslims around the world. For more information on Contemporary Muslim check out Muslim Hip-Hop which provides profiles and music samples from Muslim artist around the world who see their faith as a prime motivation for creating their music.
In class we will be looking at several examples of popular contemporary Muslim music including Sami Yusuf and the Danish Band Outlandish and the South African Band Iman and how they try to communicate issue of faith cross culturally through their music. Check out the following videos:
Sami Yusuf, is a rising star of contemporary Arabic Nasheed (traditional) music. His song Hasbi Rabbi is sung in English, Hindi, Turkish & Arabic and the video takes him to different parts of the world to engage with the Muslim Umma (community) in those places.
Outlandish, a Muslim Danish Trio mixes hip hop, folk, soul and pop to create music focusing on themes of racism, social justice and religion. as seen in their video " I Only Ask of God"