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Sevdaliza: Tiny Desk (Home) Concert

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The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit — stripped-down sets, an intimate setting — just a different space.

Jan. 5, 2021 | Bob Boilen
"Good afternoon humans, my name is Sevdaliza, you're very welcome on flight 808; our destination is Shabrang." And so begins our elegant, ethereal journey. We hear an old reel-to-reel tape machine spinning some Brazilian bossa nova sounds, then shift to something more somber. Sevdaliza is seated, the tones are golden and brown, and her yearning voice sings, "I am flesh, bones / I am skin, soul / I am human." The song, "Human," which casts away the notion of artists — particularly female artists — as products.

It's a defiant stand from this Iranian-born artist. Sevdaliza is an original, a truly creative soul. Her collaborators play delicate textures — electronic percussion, buzzing, swirling synth sounds, and cello and violin beautifully enhance texture and melody.

The home for this Tiny Desk (home) concert is a culturally significant bookstore and publishing house in Amsterdam called MENDO. Its warmth sets the tone for songs from Sevdaliza's album Shabrang. If you haven't heard her record, this is a perfect introduction to an album you shouldn't have missed in 2020.

"All Rivers at Once"
"Gole Bi Goldoon"

Sevdaliza: vocals
Anthony Amirkhan: drums
Leon den Engelsen: keys
Jonas Pap: cello
Mihai Puscoiu: violin

Video: Daniel Porcedda, Jair Mahazri
Audio: Olivier Fournier, Jonas Gehrmann

Producer: Bob Boilen
Video Producer: Morgan Noelle Smith
Audio Mastering: Josh Rogosin
Associate Producer: Bobby Carter
Tiny Production Team: Bob Boilen, Kara Frame, Maia Stern
Executive Producer: Lauren Onkey
Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann
NPR, NPR Music, National Public Radio
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