“Amplifying voices on the Road to Freedom” – United Nations World Children’s Day, November 2019
Performing ‘Refugee’ with Skip Marley and a Syrian refugee at the United Nations in New York for World Children’s Day was where my passions and purpose finally aligned.
This all started six month ago in Berlin, Germany. Amplified Records, founded by Serene Sass, partnered with Road to Freedom, founded by Ra’ed Khan, to amplify the voice of a Syrian refugee rapper. Produced by Kwame Kwaten, I joined ‘Damascus Voice’ in the studio. He wrote a verse for Skip Marley’s record ‘Refugee’ and I recorded an introduction to it. Fast forward six months – we were in New York gearing up for UNICEF’s World Children’s Day on 21st November to perform at the United Nations General Assembly Hall, introduced by David Beckham. I was to join Skip Marley on stage with the PS22 Kids Choir and Damascus Voice – on screen as he was unable to be there in person. The energy from the team was ecstatic.
Following a day of press and rehearsals (and teaching Skip the Sarangi!) we were ready to take the stage. It felt like seconds, it was over so quickly! As soon as we got off stage, we met Henrietta Fore, the Executive Director of UNICEF, the youngest UN Goodwill ambassador Millie Bobby Brown (Stranger Things) and the longest serving UN Goodwill ambassador, David Beckham. Many of the UN audience members, including Henrietta, attended my showcase later that evening at the Norwood and the overall feedback was exactly what I felt. That this is where music can articulate why we want to do good in the world, more than we can say in words.
The end of this trip marked the beginning of a whole new journey. I am deeply grateful to be joining the Ferocious family. I couldn’t imagine myself anywhere else.