K'naan
  • K'naan

Music inspires a lot of different feelings and emotions for me - like most other people I hope. I listen for melodies that, regardless of the language, make me feel something. I am a huge Bollywood fan and all the movies are musicals thus have 5 or 6 songs each. I cannot understand the languages but the songs resonate and leave me with a certain feeling; whether its happy or sad or just wanting to dance. I also listen a great deal to Somali, Arabic, American, Japanese, Ethiopian and others.

Growing up, the culture I lived in did not and does not encourage music or movies as entertainment. As such, it always worried me to have such strong reactions to the songs I hear because I've always heard that music is accompanied by 'shaydaan' or devil. However, much of our culture is passed down and learned through music. More importantly, Somali history is dependent on poetry; it is how every generation passed their wisdom down to the young. My mother says that before the war, society was open to these forms of entertainment but I want to see that in my lifetime. While the use of poetry and song has greatly decreased in Somalia, I hope that someday we will yet again celebrate great poets, singers and song writers.