We feel passionate to host the exclusive track premiere on Last Day Deaf of the genre-breaking anthem ‘YABA يابا‘ by Jamila & The Other Heroes. The song’s volcanic energy is sweetened from Jamila’s sweet neo soul vocals, while the rest of the band unleashes an out of this world fusion of desert psychedelic rock, mixed with afrobeat percussion, highly energetic funky bass lines and Arabic folk elements.
This anthem contains also political content, and Jamila is asking her father about his memories of Palestine after 50 years in exile and describes what she found when travelling there on her own:
‘Do you remember how your home looked like?
And which pictures were on the wall?
Do you remember the taste of the olive oil?
Tell me about it Dad!
Do you remember how they kicked you out?
And what you put in your box?
Do you remember the photo of your father,
the one that got lost?
I visited after many years
The house is still the same
I saw the sad mountains
Where did my family go, yaba?’
We dedicate this premiere to the aching folks of Palestine…
About Jamila & The Other Heroes:
JAMILA & THE OTHER HEROES combine psychedelic desert funk with political content. While racist agitation is increasingly becoming acceptable in many circles of our society, the five musicians have made it their mission to break down prejudices towards people with histories of migration and asylum and make the abundance of cultural diversity more visible and audible. “For us music is not free of politics! Given that in particular women of color are underrepresented in the music industry, we want to set an example for emancipation and empowerment. This is why we turn into heroes and are determined to advocate in our lyrics and sounds for a more just and fair society”, explains the 31-year-old front singer Jamila Al-Yousef, who put together the band in 2016 after returning from a magical concert by Erykah Badu and Hiatus Kaiyote in New York.
The band merges psychedelic rock with elements of funk and Arab folklore. The percussionist Salam Alhassan, who fled from Syria to Germany in 2015, brought contemporary as well as folkloric musical influences from the Levant region into the mix while the guitarist Leon Sánchez has a Latin American music background. Pier Caccio shows his magic on drums, especially influenced by Afrobeat music, while Felix Barth gets you into the groove with his bass lines. All five band members have one thing in common: their youth was heavily influenced by rock and hip hop music. To achieve their unusual sound, they take inspiration from a variety of musicians including Yasmine Hamdan, Aziza Brahim, Hiatus Kaiyote, Tony Allen, Novos Bahianos, Toot Ard and Altin Gün.
After touring in Germany, the Middle East and North Africa in the past four years (amongst other opening for BUKAHARA), the band’s raw, concentrated energy manifests in their debut album “SIT EL KON. الكون ست) ”The Grandmother of the Universe) released in 2020 under German independent label Springstoff. Tours in Germany, Egypt, Lebanon, VAE and other European destinations are on hold till the end of pandemic
Photo Credits: Carolin Saage