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Mohammed Said Farsi Chair of Islamic Peace

Beats of Faith: DC Hip Hop Artists and Their Inspiration from Islam

Date: April 18, 2012

Location: McDowell Formal Lounge

Guest Speaker: Joshua Salaam, Member of Native Deen

Moderator: Elias Yousif, BA/SIS '13

Hip hop has become a popular outlet for many young Muslims to express their faith, their cultural identity and their social challenges. In this event, we featured local artist Joshua Salaam and asked him to speak about three questions:

How does his faith influence his music?

Does your music comment on Islam? If so, how?

How do you think music can be influential in Muslim communities in the US and around the world?

Joshua Salaam spoke about his passion for his faith and how Native Deen uses music to connect with communities around the world. Many of their songs are inspired by personal lessons from faith like forgiveness, and how to find strength in your identity. Growing up in Camden, New Jersey and working in the military, Joshua told us about how his diverse experiences shape and influence his music. The discussion was rich with questions and reflections about the challenges of being a musician and a Muslim, how to take pride in your faith, and the way music can transcend cultural barriers.

For more pictures from the event, please see our Facebook page. For more information on Native Deen and to see them at an upcoming show, please visit their website.