It’s finally done.
7 years in the making. The “twin project” to my forthcoming album “tilted”. The music therapy and grieving for my father passing in 2017, and my coping with the new Era of COV-ID.
The beginnings of an idea…
Around 2016 I had the idea of making a project that used gospel samples but was presented with Islamic inspired themes. What I called then “Muslim Gospel”.
I let the idea marinate for a while. At that same time I was working on “tilted” (at the time known as “HUMPTy”). The core-sound for “tilted” and “Ramadan In Babylon” became distinct the more I created the two. So I settled on leaving the two as separate projects.
The year of 2017 will forever go down as the (if not one of) the worst years in my life. On New Year’s my Ma was in ICU at the hospital where we found she had a type of pancreatic cancer. Later that summer my Baba passed away. And later that following fall we introduced our infamous 45th, El Presidente Trump.
I was in need of some kind of healing. But I didn’t have the soul to create with at that time.
A lot of my world felt pointless at that point. And this time around in my life, I allowed myself the time to come to a place to create instead of forcing it like I have in the past.
The year COV-ID hit, changed everyone’s lives. And 3 years after my “Worst Year”, I felt that then was the time to start working on “Ramadan In Babylon” again.
Life has a funny way of saying, “Nah, hahahahaha” *evil villain laugh*
Sometimes we have an idea or a plan, but Allah has a better one (as the Qur’an says). And in 2020, the plan was to record and produce what I could, and come back to it later.
Coming back to being a practicing Muslim has been an interesting and ‘beautiful struggle’ of a journey. After my Baba passed, I stopped really practicing overall. But I was “out on the desert” as my Baba used to say before he passed away and my Ma got sick.
This Ramadan was different. It was my Ma’s 2nd Ramadan as new convert to Islam while enduring chemo. It was the 6th Ramadan without my Baba.
And in the creation of this project, I was able to find the closure and beginnings of “the way back” I was seeking for so long.
And what hope the world can take from this, like how you hear from my parents Baba Ashimba & Umi Dianne on “Ramadan In Babylon”, is a musically heartfelt letter of appreciation to my parents and this religion. A musical medicine for the soul during a time where the tyrants of the world seek to poison it as they did in centuries past.