Faouzia on How Morocco Shapes Her Music
21.09.2023 - 18:07
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Lale chats with Moroccan-Canadian singer songwriter Faouzia Ouihya—who, at just 23, has already clocked up numerous accolades for her poppy, anthemic hooks performed in English, French, and Arabic. They talk Moroccan food, how Faouzia’s heritage shapes her music, and more. This episode was recorded several weeks before the devastating earthquake in Morocco.
Lale Arikoglu: Hi. I'm Lale Arikoglu, and this is Women Who Travel. Today my guest is an Moroccan-Canadian singer-songwriter who, at just 23, has already clocked up numerous accolades for her poppy anthemic hooks performed in English, French, and Arabic. She's Faouzia Ouihya.
A quick note before we get started. This episode was recorded several weeks before the devastating earthquake in Morocco. For information on how to help and donate, head to cntraveler.com.
Faouzia: My sound as an artist is, uh, dramatic, dark, like, fun pop sound that I would say sometimes has a Middle Eastern flair mixed in, in some tracks. But there's also a, a, an almost theatrical aspect to some of my songs as well.
LA: Born in Casablanca, Faouzia and her family settled in the prairie country of Central Canada in the early 2000s.
Faouzia: So we immigrated when I was one. So I was just a little baby. But I feel like I held on to my culture really well because my parents spoke to us in Arabic, and they spoke to us in French, and we would eat Moroccan food all the time.
LA: Is it your hope that there's other women, people like you, from Morocco who may be living somewhere else that can see themselves?
Faouzia: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I didn't really have anyone like me to listen to growing up to, and that kind of had that both world situation going on. And I hope that people that are like me, or people that are just even experiencing different cultures, whether ... whatever part of the world they're from, and whatever part of the world they may have immigrated to, to see that it really doesn't matter where you are in the world. As long as you embrace who you are and your culture, and you wanna do what you wanna do in your life, then I hope that they can find themselves in, in my career and in my music.
LA: Clearly, it's happening because you are reaching so many audiences, and there's a ton of TikTok dances, um [laughs] ... that have been cropping up. How does that feel, to see you kind of reaching all these people and reaching lots of people in countries in the Middle East and beyond?
Faouzia: Oh, my gosh. Every day, it never ... Like, it has not sunk in yet. Every time I see people all around the world making dances or making covers or singing along,