Chill in The Fire – inspiration

The lyrics for “Chill in The Fire” are here.

The inspiration for this song comes from a beautiful book written in Farsi (the Persian/ Iranian language) by Baha’u’llah, entitled The Seven Valleys. The book is a long, mystical poem about the quest of the human soul to attain closeness to God, the object of its desire. It describes an analogy of the soul having to traverse seven stages (called seven valleys or seven cities) in this journey towards “the traceless Friend”. The second of these valleys or cities is “The Valley of Love“. In this stage, the soul, having already traversed “The Valley of Search”, is in a state of simultaneous ecstasy and madness. There are many wonderful contradictions of experiences in this valley. My favourite couplet, which is borrowed and adapted by Baha’u’llah from a Persian mystical poem, is:

“A lover is he who is chill in hell fire;
A knower is he who is dry in the sea.”

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All the lyrics in this song are based on the compelling images in the text regarding “The Valley of Love”. The Persian chant that is heard in both this song and its introduction is a melodic invention on the couplet that I quoted above, in the original language that it was written in.

Chill in The Fire – lyrics

Chill in The Fire

نشان عاشق آن باشد که سردش بینی از دوزخ
نشان عارف آن باشد که خشکش بینی از دریا
که خشکش بینی از دریا

Search for my Love in the desert of the world
Each mirage is magic; each horizon tragic
I drink the seven seas and yet still I thirst
And the fire inside me has burned up all logic
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Give Me a Reason – inspiration

The lyrics for “Give Me a Reason” are here.

This song follows on from the same storyline as the song “Impostor“, and before that the song “Disappointed“. Having gone through stages of sadness and anger, this song comes from a place where I deeply want to forgive the person who hurt me, but am struggling to find the inner strength to let go of my hurt. The images in the song of broken glass represent both that person, as I know that this person has also suffered a lot, and also my broken trust in the person. They can never undo what they did to me, just like you can never unbreak a glass. I still very much love this person, so I want to forgive them, but I don’t know if I can ever trust them again. But I wish that I could.

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Give Me a Reason – lyrics

Give Me a Reason

Your word was a glass crystallised vase
You turned and you knocked it off my table
And I watched as it shattered, and there I wept
And the sky, it wept with me
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“The Second City” Album Launch

“The Second City” Album Launch show in Perth is just around the corner, celebrating the release of Shameem’s sophomore album in her hometown before she takes off for a national tour. Shameem will be putting on a unique full band show at premier Perth venue Subiaco Arts Centre, with special guests and never-before-heard arrangements of her music. There will also be a display of original artwork that was created by several WA artists for her photo and video shoots associated with this album. Tickets are available here from Ticketek.

Shameem will be supported by Trevor Jalla. 15 years as a full-time musician has taken Trevor from European festival stages and club dates across the USA to the most intimate solo acoustic performances around Perth and South-West WA. His unique blend of soul, folk, country and blues pays homage to influences such as Ray Charles, James Taylor, George Jones and Robert Johnson.

Shameem’s special guests will include rapper Empty and hip-hop dancers Lisa and Chido from The Dance Workshop.

Under One Sun – inspiration

The lyrics for “Under One Sun” are here.

Scientists have discovered that every single human being on the planet shares 99.9% of their genes with every other human. In other words, we are 99.9% genetically the same as everyone else, and only 0.1% different. Through genetic research, scientists have also concluded that we are all descended from a common ancestor who lived in Africa some 200,000 years ago. So we are literally all related to each other, by blood.

Even before I learnt these scientific concepts regarding evolution and DNA, I was a believer in the oneness of humanity from a spiritual point of view. In the Baha’i Writings, it says: “O CHILDREN OF MEN! Know ye not why We created you all from the same dust? That no one should exalt himself over the other. Ponder at all times in your hearts how ye were created. Since We have created you all from one same substance it is incumbent on you to be even as one soul, to walk with the same feet, eat with the same mouth and dwell in the same land, that from your inmost being, by your deeds and actions, the signs of oneness and the essence of detachment may be made manifest.”

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 Painting by Phil Doncon.

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Under One Sun – lyrics

Under One Sun

It takes just one moment, just one dream
‘Cause you know we all need to be loved
We come from one ancestor, just one forefather
And one earth mother, under one sun

We are but one, we are but one
Don’t you know that everyone’s dreaming under one sun?
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Impostor – inspiration

The lyrics for “Impostor” are here.

I have a rule: when I write a song about an actual person, I only tell people who the song is about if it’s a nice song that casts that person in a positive light. So I won’t be telling you who this song is about. In fact, it’s such an angry and negative song that for a while I contemplated whether or not I should even include it on my album. My mission as an artist is to uplift and inspire people to better themselves and to contribute to the betterment of the world, and I didn’t feel that this song fulfilled that purpose. In the end, I decided to put this song on the album, because it’s a milestone on a personal journey of mine to overcome hurt and to practice forgiveness. It’s not a happy song, but I hope that one day the story that it’s a part of will be a happy one. I also thought that it’s important to show that just because you’re trying to be a good person and do good things, it doesn’t mean that the journey is smooth sailing and there won’t be obstacles in your path. You still go through hurt and anger like everyone does.

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Impostor – lyrics


You are a sneaky weasel
With all your two-faced treason
Attacked without a reason
Didn’t leave a clue
I was your one defender
But you were one pretender
Who bit the arm that leant a
Helping hand to you

I watch the smoke clear
It’s just as I feared
The crime scene appears
The truth, apparent
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Other Half of My Heart – inspiration

The lyrics for “Other Half of My Heart” are here.

If you look at the lyrics for this song, it’s pretty obvious that it’s a love song. You can interpret it any way you like, and make it about anyone that you want. But if you’d like to know who I wrote it about, well then, it’s about my sister Naseem.

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