The first time I saw Aamir perform, I couldn’t believe my eyes. He had transformed into a beast that spat out poetic rhymes and spoke of justice, equality and unveiling the truth.
He had the crowd hooked to every word he said. They reacted to his music – shouting and cheering on. It was like he had cast a spell on them.
Shaikh and I went on to become great friends over the years. We’ve shot together for his album and shared hundreds of conversations over beer. When I asked him if he would tell me his story – the one of being a Muslim rapper, he was as excited as I was.
He came from a religious institution where his art was considered a taboo and most of all, looked down upon. He fought his way through the bullying, nasty comments, insane lows and became the artist we all know and respect today.
His songs question the right-wing government, religious norms and at large the society that we’ve built around us. His verses are his greatest weapons to spread awareness and bring change in the system and society.
“We all belong to a single race – the human race,” he tells me as we talk about how shaming on the pretext of religion has become alarmingly common.
This absolutely raw interview with Shaikh is carefully mixed with some of his best lyrical creations. He will inspire you to be rebellious and create art that makes an impact to the world around us.
In the recent months, Shaikh has taken a break from political activism, even in his music. His latest album “Shaikh Them” is more relaxed and talks about his journey and lifestyle as an Emcee. He has also collaborated with new voices and producers and the tracks have a boombap flavor mixed with new school flows.
First time on UDYC? Don’t forget to check out our other projects.
If you’ve been shamed for your body type, you should read Parthiv and Priyanka‘s stories.
Shamed for being a girl? Check out Miloni’s story.