The ladies of Poetic Pilgrim are putting are diversifying the face of Hip-hop and the face of women in hijabs.
The musical duo, which is made up of Muneera Williams and Sukina Owen-Douglas, blends spoken word poetry, hip-hop, and reggae to create their eclectic sounds. The two women who hail from Bristol, London, spoke with The Guardian about how Muslim women are perceived, even in large, diverse cities.
“There’s this dichotomy,” says Owen-Douglas, 33. “Some days I’d walk down the street in my hijab with my headphones on listening to the Wu-Tang Clan. I’d catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and laugh. Someone would see me and probably think I can’t speak English properly, but I’m actually listening to rap.”
They also spoke of the expectations of their community,
“It’s really because we’re women, or we’re doing music,” says Williams, 34. “There’s this idea [in Islam that] our voices are beauty, and we shouldn’t show our beauty.” She says that at gigs in the Muslim community the women have been asked to sit down throughout their performance and not move, or even perform behind a screen.
Williams and Owen-Douglas spread their message of female empowerment through their music with performances all over the world. Check out some of their latest sounds.