U.K.-based Somali vocalist Nimco Yasin is bringing her qaraami singing to St. Cloud.
She’ll engage with St. Cloud State students, with youth in the community and with St. Cloud Area School District 742 students.
Her visit culminates with a 7 p.m. April 15 show at Paramount Center for the Arts. Supporting acts are Twin Cities vocalists Rahmo Rose and Iskalaji.
Qaraami evolved in the middle of the 20th century as a key form of Somali popular music. Since the 1970s, some variants have included elements of Western soul, jazz and funk.
Yasin rose to fame as a member of the Waaberi Band, or “Dawn Players.” A government-sponsored troupe that included Somalia’s most talented musicians and dancers, Waaberi toured the world multiple times and was a source of national pride for 30 years.
Artists were among the first to be impacted in the late 1980s by political instability in Somalia. Yasin fled to Great Britain in 1989, shortly before the the civil war which nearly wiped out the nation’s rich artistic traditions.
Since then, she has rebuilt her career as an artist. Known for her striking voice and emotional love ballads, Yasin eloquently revives the qaraami sound for which Waaberi was known.
Yasin’s visit is managed by Midnimo, which hosts concerts and events that increase understanding of Somali cultures. Launched by Augsburg College in 2014, Midnimo has expanded to include partnerships with Minnesota State University, Mankato, the Paramount Center for the Arts in St. Cloud and St. Cloud State University.
Yasin will be on campus April 10-12. A partial schedule:
- 1 p.m. interview at KVSC 88.1 FM/Jo McMullen-Boyer
- 2:30 p.m. interview on KZYS Somali Radio/Ahmed Abdi
- 9 a.m. in MUSM 125 class/Catherine Verrilli
- 10:30 a.m. in CMST 210 class/Jen Tuder
- 2 p.m. in CMST 210 class/Jen Tuder