Wed. 7pm – Recognized for her twistedly enthralling lyrics and distinctive soulful voice, Cold Specks herself refers to her songs as “weird outsider music”. But weird is in the ear of the beholder. As is the term outsider. And apparently a lot of people feel a connection to both those terms and to her music. Twice nominated for the Polaris Prize – also a JUNO Nominee – her audience has been consistently growing.
Cold Specks grew up in Etobicoke, Ontario. There were always musical instruments around the house and her dad would play them, but it was only recently that she discovered that her father helped found a famous Somali band in the 1970s. She dove into VHS recordings that had survived the civil war in Somalia, and found recordings of that band and others – many of them friends of her father’s. This video for “Wild Card” from her latest album Fool’s Paradise, is not only heavily influenced by those old videos but includes clips from them as well.
During the process of writing and recording the songs on Fool’s Paradise, Cold Specks also found herself confronted by overwhelmingly negative images of Somalia and Somalians on the news. Many of the songs are a direct response to that one-sided view of a people and a culture.
Although she prefers to be called Cold Specks, more recently she has also allowed her fans to know her as Ladan Hussein; a Somali-Canadian woman and a member of the very large Somali population in Canada. “I used to feel like I was always stuck between two worlds. But through this process, I learned to dance divinely between them.”
This is your invitation to tune in this Wednesday evening at 7 for Cold Specks’ Mixtape.