Following the release of singles, ‘Dirty Girls’ & ‘On My Mind’ ft. My Rugema, Multi-talented producer, rapper and singer Shunaji today releases her long-awaited EP, ‘Cosmic Blues’ via her own Solo Recordings imprint. The London-via-Rome rapper has established herself as an artist to be heard, with poignant lyricism and dynamic productions setting alight her path so far. She has previously garnered support from the MOBO Help Musicians Fund and the PRS Foundation’s Women Make Music, in recognition of her innovative musical style and thought-provoking lyrical flow.
“The ‘Cosmic Blues’ EP combines an experimental hip-hop approach to production, e.g. using sampling techniques, with a more traditional use of instrumentation such as trombone, flute, sax and piano. The EP evolves from my previous projects, where any live instruments were heavily manipulated to fit an electronic music production style. In Cosmic Blues, I worked with musicians to interpret my demos and arrange them in a horizontal (rather than sample-focused, vertical) flow.” – Shunaji
With a deep fascination and yearning to understand the subjects of outer space and natural philosophy, Shunaji’s ‘Cosmic Blues’ EP is a representation of her connection to the cosmos and a journey through her understanding. Throughout the writing and inspiration phases of the body of work, she drew on her fascination of ancient cultures, such as Latin-Greek, The Etrurscans, The Sumerians and beyond; all of which studied celestial bodies to develop their spirituality and self-awareness, helping her to channel her own experiences and challenge herself to push musical boundaries on ‘Cosmic Blues’.
‘Cosmic Blues’ reflects Shunaj’s roots and inspirations that lie deep within the genres of Jazz, Folk, Trip-Hop, Soul & Synthwave. Employing experimental methods as well as old-school hip-hop techniques, she pulls together her knowledge and combines her influences. Shunaji’s approach has led to acclaim within the independent music scene in the UK and Europe, with her sound appealing to a wider audience, that pushes the limitations of mainstream music.
Opening the EP, ‘Cosmic Blues’ represents Shunaji’s launch into outer space, building on her understanding and influences from the cosmos, that she uses to develop her own spirituality and self-awareness. Followed by ‘Wild Coast’, a song that was written during her time in Santa Monica, where she drew inspiration from the sea and landscapes around her, all folding into the beauty that surrounds us in everyday life.
‘Dirty Girls’ provides an eloquent and thought-provoking critique of topics such as slut shaming and the media’s role in normalising the misrepresentation of women, she reclaims the definition of ‘Dirty’, demonstrating sex and sexuality do not affect who she is as a woman, her credibility or intellectual ability. Whereas, ‘On My Mind’ is Shunaji’s first production that features the vocals of a male rapper, London based My Rugema. A song about longing for love, ‘On My Mind’ also reflects on past and lost loves. With the addition of My Rugema, his verse serves as a stunning counter-position for Shunaji’s elegant lyricism and confession of a ‘departed’ woman.
The EP further demonstrates Shunaji’s unique and imitable style that develops cultural conversations through the medium of song. Intertwining subjects and challenging the listener to question their own experiences with love and loss, sexuality and their inner connection to the cosmos.
Shunaji – ‘Cosmic Blues’ – Tracklist:
‘On My Mind’ ft. My Rugema
Shunaji’s ‘Cosmic Blues’ EP is available now across all platforms via Solo Recordings.