“Mustafa’s message, of caring as an act of courage, is one that feels especially apt amid the uncertainty of today.” – The FADER
On March 10th, 2020, 23-year-old Muslim poet Mustafa released his stunning debut single ‘Stay Alive’. Today, Mustafa follows the track with a beautiful performance of new song ‘Come Back’ alongside James Blake. Directed by Nabil, the minimalist performance highlights Mustafa’s elegant, understated songwriting.
Speaking on the meaning behind song and Blake’s hand in it, Mustafa says: “Perpetually grateful for James who helped free me of my own emotional burdens when I was young, to now helping me free these stories of those who’ve passed too young. today marks 2 years without Smoke Dawg. I pray the people you lost come back to you in the form that heals you best, if not a memory, a dream, if not a dream, in their sibling’s eyes, if not that, than in the way you carry yourself”.
‘Stay Alive’ was named a Song You Need To Know by Rolling Stone and is a near-perfect introduction to a vital new voice in music. Produced by Frank Dukes and James Blake, this is inner-city folk music; a song for, about, and born out of the hood. Mustafa was first moved to make music after he lost several close friends to gun violence. ‘Stay Alive’ is addressed to those departed friends and to his Toronto neighbourhood, Regent Park. On the accompanying video, ‘Stay Alive’s’ powerful message is presented alongside emotive footage of Regent Park, Mustafa’s native neighbourhood in downtown Toronto.
Watch the performance of ‘Come Back’ now and stay tuned for more from Mustafa soon.