“I create things that people usually keep inside their heads, but I say them out loud. My journey has been me breaking barriers to do it as a Brown woman – punching walls to create space for myself and my voice.”
Celebrating the diverse and multi-faceted pool of Amsterdam talent, Calvin Klein Jeans and Glamcult have come together to capture creative individuals in the new season’s workwear finest. We caught up with singer-songwriter and proud Kurdish woman, Naaz, to reflect on her most recent come-back and manifestations for 2023. Read the interview and make sure to come by DOLLEBEGIJNSTEEG 5 to experience the Calvin Klein exhibition and brand-new Glamcult Store from March 3rd to the 12th!
Hey! Tell me about your look today. How are you feeling?
I think it’s a very cool look – I love how the trousers give a sportier vibe, but the shape keeps it very feminine at the same time. Adding a tight classy top just completes it so nicely. I can wear this during the day, and swap it for a skirt in the evening for a hot going-out look. I really like the balance between tight and baggy.
Congratulations on the release of your latest album Never Have I Ever! It sounds absolutely beautiful. Talk me through its story and the process of making it come to life.
It’s based on all the things you wanted to try out in life but couldn’t really do until you realised you can start your life over again and do it your own way. It’s about crossing your different “never have I evers”, and about how exciting life is when you understand that you can always change. That’s just life explained.
There is definitely a lot of power and bravery in your message. How has your personal story influenced your artistry?
I’m Kurdish and have been raised in a more conservative family. Because of that, it’s always been difficult to pursue art, as so much of art lies in self-expression. It means that I create things that people usually keep inside their heads, but I say them out loud. My journey has been me breaking barriers to do it as a Brown woman – punching walls to create space for myself and my voice.
A caption for one of your songs was ‘she sounds like hope’. What does hope mean to you?
Hope for me is a feeling of looking forward to something even when you have nothing planned. When you can imagine that there is a horizon to look forward to. You don’t really know what is, but you know there is something for you.
You recently played your first show in three years! How did it feel?
It was amazing! I’ve been away for so long and known life without it, which is why I’ve come to appreciate it so much. Now, when I’m on stage, I’m not even nervous – I’m just so grateful to be there. Gratitude takes over any negative feelings. I can only say that I really enjoyed it.
What is something you’re proud of?
Definitely the show that I just played. It was the Royal Theatre, we sold out, and we got 5-star reviews. It was one of the biggest and proudest moments of my life.
I imagine it’s incredibly hard to choose, but do you have a favourite/most special song from your recent album?
I really love my Kurdish song Azadi. I find it so cool how a song like that has reached so many people – and even people who don’t speak the language. I think it’s proof of how strong emotion can be, and that you don’t have to understand the semantics to understand the feeling. I believe it’s a very powerful message we can all learn from.
What do you hope to see more of in the music industry?
I would want to put more focus on art and sincerity.
What is a song that brings you peace of mind?
It’s a song that’s actually really dark, but I try to switch off from the lyrics. It’s Pumped up Kicks by Foster the People, and it just makes me so happy. It’s such a beautiful song if you don’t listen to the lyrics!
What are you manifesting for 2023?
I’m manifesting that I create a big community where everyone feels safe and happy with each other. A special space from which we can fill beautiful venues together multiple times, play music, make friends and fall in love.
Calvin Klein Jeans will take over the Glamcult Store from March 3rd-12th!
Launching with a bang, come by the store and see the full exhibition of Amsterdam creatives alongside the Calvin Klein Jeans pre-spring ‘23 collection, New Utility.
(From March 18th onwards, we return to the Glamcult curation)
Art Direction by Glamcult
Photography by Piet Oosterbeek
Styling by Pykel van Latum & Rogier Vlaming — Glamcult
Makeup by June Peters
Modelled by Daniel Smedeman
Photography assistance by Andrea Amponsah
Styling assistance by Evita Shrestha
Shot at Studio Mucha