World fusion artist Miriam Tamar has just released "Firedance" and "Who We", remixed by Morsy. "Firedance" is an addicting dance beat accompanied by an inspiring video of Ugandan children breakdancing, featuring the kids from the non profit dance program "Breakdance Project Uganda". "Who We" also comes with a video shot entirely by drone. It follows Miriam through an exotic desert, and features a global, pulsating sound.
Travel and humanitarian work inspired the artist's music, and continues to. After school where Miriam studied Peace and Justice studies, she moved to Uganda to work with a peace education program. It was there that she, having a musical jazz background found a studio in a tiny mud-brick hut and with a close friend began to write songs together with a local producer. Her music is filled with intense colored and textures, creating empowering lyrics, and vibrant rhythms of alt pop, R&B, electronic, folk and world music.
" When I originally wrote my EP, I wanted to create a soundscape, fusing the organic with the electronic. With Morsy on the Who We/ Firedance remix, I got the opportunity to take this song in a new direction, straight to the dance floor, bringing in those infectious groovy aphrodeep House vibes! It reminds me of dancing until sunrise in the Ugandan night clubs, and just feeling totally free"-Miriam Tamar
I spoke with Miriam once again about her music and her newest remixes....
What's new since we last spoke?
I know, it seems like ages but I guess it wasn't too long ago. So I rolled out the EP and most recently I released a couple remixes. I did a couple of remixes from the EP with Morsy, a house producer based in New York. That's my latest project, it's a remix of Firedance, the lead track of my EP.
How did you do with the EP?
The EP went really well. It rolled out well and I also did a live series of the entire EP which was really cool. With the band I did a whole life set with that, bass, percussion, keys... that was cool to do that especially since I'm working up to doing some more gigs and trying to show the live side of what I do to my audience. So I did that for the EP, then these remixes. I was really excited about the Firedance mix because I finally got to reconnect with Uganda. I haven't been back but I got to collaborate with some of the people that I have known for so many years. I reached out to Abrams the founder of the project there, who I've known since about 2010. One of my friends used to work with his program and some of the kids used to dance at our compound when they needed extra space to rehearse. Once I heard the remix with this really groovy Afrodeep beat, I knew I wanted there to be dance visuals. So this was a really cool way to reconnect with Uganda, and re-imagine the song which lyrically talks about empowerment. I think a dance program that works with disadvantaged youth is a good match.
Are you planning to go back to Uganda?
Oh yeah. My fiancé is Ugandan, and we also collaborate. So I'm connected to Uganda in a lot of ways.
Are you going to wind up living there?
We would love to be part time. That's the hope. I think you have to sort of go back-and-forth to keep things going. And besides this I'm actually working on an album with my partner, a whole album. That will be the next project coming. We collaborated with that album with this guy from Uganda and this guy from the Congo. That's what so cool there are so many people living in the US that are from Africa. But we also imagine going back to Uganda to get video footage and to sort of build this cross cultural educational component, and add more contacts to the music. So I think we are interconnected.
Will you be touring Africa?
Yes! The hope is to do an African tour, a European tour, and to find ways to connect my solo work and the collaborative work again and again with kind of tying the themes together. A lot of it's about crossing cultural boundaries and conversation and just showing human commonality. So even with this project just using music and dance, we have sort of like this electric dance music and my world fusion pop music, and then we have hip-hop, breakdance all happening, and it's also taking place in Uganda. So it's crossing multiple boundaries and bringing people together who are hopefully smiling and just dancing along to it.
How did you learn about the Breakdancing project ?
I learned about Breakdance Project Uganda (BPU) and met the founder/director, Abramz Tekya, back around 2010, while I was living in post- conflict Northern Uganda working in Peace Education. One of my housemates did some work with the regional BPU, and the kids would occasionally practice on our large compound. https://www.facebook.com/breakdanceprojectuganda (they have their nonprofit mission statement and info in the about section).
Abramz is also a hiphop artist, so we remained connected over the years through our Ugandan artist community. I always envisioned Firedance with dance visuals, because dance is another form of expression that goes beyond words, that can express complete catharsis- the strength of an inner flame that sometimes can't be seen otherwise. BPU uses dance and hiphop culture to empower disadvantaged youth throughout Uganda. In the video, you can see the joy, resilience, sense of community and self-confidence that BPU brings the kids- working and living in Uganda also gave these things to me- it's our shared "firedance."
I teamed up with Morsy to do a couple remixes from my EP, because he produces a wide range of edgy but genuine and groovy house. I knew he could bring the international, afrodeep, afrohouse vibe I was looking for. He's based out of NYC (https://www.morsymusic.com/bio).
I have a live video series of my EP on my YouTube channel, and am currently finishing a world music collaborative album with partner GNL Zamba, to be released early next year.
Watch the video for Firedance (Morsy Remix) ft. Breakdance Project Uganda: https://youtu.be/MmV_XKv2Bzc
Written by Eileen Shapiro
I work with Jimmy Star and am a NY Times best selling author and rock star journalist....currently write for Get Out Mag, PureM, Classic Pop, Huffington Post, and several others....I write pop culture interviews with well established talent and up and coming great talent...look forward to working with you....