Mix It Up: Nabihah Iqbal For Nicholas Daley
Renowned for the synergy between his work and its musical influences, as well as having the best live music acts at his shows, Nicholas Daley has asked collaborator and musician Nabihah Iqbal to curate an exclusive playlist for Browns, inspired by his ethos.
Titled The Known Unknown, Iqbal says of the playlist: “I feel that the sounds and emotions within this music resonate well with the aesthetic of Nicholas Daley's ‘Astro Black’ collection - it ties in with Nicholas' homage to spiritual jazz through his clothing. The Known Unknown is also a poignant way to describe the power of music and the feelings it gives us. Music moves us and brings us together in ways that other art forms can't. The very essence of music is spiritual, and this essence is captured perfectly in the tracks I've chosen.”
Discover Iqbal’s mixtape below.
Piece Of Mind by Idris Muhammad
I chose this track as the opening track, because it has such a majestic opening. It reminds me of New York.
Rebirth by Cedric Im Brooks & The Light of Saba
Cedric Brooks is an incredible Jamaican saxophonist. On this record, he collaborates with a band called “The Light of Saba” and the result is a perfect combination. The first time I heard Cedric Brooks' music, a friend played it to me whilst I was on tour in Australia. Now his music always reminds me of that time.
Egypt (Sais) by Lonnie Liston Smith & The Cosmic Echoes
I picked this record up whilst I was on tour in Japan a couple of years back, in a tiny little hidden treasure trove of a record store called Honto Records, tucked away on the third floor of an unassuming building. We just stumbled across it! For anyone in Kyoto who's into digging, I highly recommend looking up this store - you'll definitely find something you like.
The Traveller by Khan Jamal
Khan Jamal's music is hard to put into words. His vibraphone playing is heavenly. The first time I heard his music was in the back of a cab in London. Jamal's track The Known Unknown came on the radio and I Shazammed it straight away. Every one of his tracks that I hear has a profound effect on me - his music is so beautiful.
Snowfall by Emily Remler
Emily Remler is a recent discovery for me. She was an incredible jazz guitarist from New York, who sadly died at the young age of 32.
Shortie's Portion by Patrice Rushen
Patrice Rushen is best known for her 80s pop hits such as Forget Me Nots. A lot of people don't realise that she is also a very accomplished pianist. Prior to her rebranding as a pop vocalist, she released some amazing jazz piano records. I love her style and listening to her dexterity on the keys is a pleasure.
River People by Weather Report
Weather Report is the prog jazz band led by one of my favourite trumpeters, Wayne Shorter. I love this track because it pushes boundaries and it makes me imagine what it must have been like for the group to record this album together. The track reminds me so much of London in the summer of 2013. I think that's when I first heard it, and that summer is one of those summers that you always remember because the whole thing forms one balmy, blissful memory.
More Creation by Lennie Hibbert
Reggae vibraphone - a great combo. I love Lennie Hibbert's style. This was another record I picked up in Japan - this time at Dub Store in Tokyo: the most incredible music shop dedicated to all things reggae. I spent a good few hours in there - and all my money too!
The Emperor by Donald Byrd
I've been getting into Donald Byrd a lot lately. I haven't explored much of his discography yet, but I feel like every track I listen to is incredible. I love the flow of this one.
Journey In Satchindananda by Alice Coltrane ft. Pharoah Sanders
Perhaps the epitome of spiritual jazz, this track takes you on a real journey. I often find that Western music which references Eastern styles or instruments ends up sounding so pastiche and naff. But the inclusion of sitar on this track, and the homage to the raga system feels perfect and effortless.
Cloud Nine by Mongo Santamaria
Mongo Santamaria is one of my favourite jazz percussionists. He has a special energy which you can feel through all his music, and it always makes you want to dance, especially this track.
Drum Song by Earth Wind & Fire
This track was probably my favourite discovery of 2019. I found it in a record store in Cape Town called Observatory Records (another really great store to check out if you're in that part of the world). This is the perfect track for a dance floor. It reminds me of some of the most fun DJ sets I played last year, and in particular my set at Red Eyes in Moscow last summer. I was going pretty hard with the music, and everyone was dancing and sweating. I dropped this track to break things up and everyone got so into it. The song came on just as the sun was rising and everything felt perfect.
The Space Between by Joanna Brouk
I'm a big fan of experimental, ambient music and I feel that Joanna Brouk conveys the essence of transcendental ambient music with this track. Each note, each progression and all the space in between evokes a real sense of spirituality.
Is This All? by Bobbi Humphrey
Bobbi Humphrey is a jazz flute legend and even though I love her upbeat tracks like Harlem River Drive, there's something so special about her downtempo numbers. I think a lot of it has to do with the sound of the flute, and how the notes move at a slower pace. So beautiful.
Mysteries of the World by MFSB
A good one to end on! I love how this track starts and builds with the spacey strings and then suddenly transforms into a jazzy disco banger. Always good to dance to!
Nabihah Iqbal is a musician, producer, DJ and broadcaster. Her debut album, Weighing of the Heart was released via Ninja Tune, and she’s working on her second album at Somerset House Studios in London, where she is an artist-in-residence. She presents a bi-weekly radio show on NTS Radio, and has also done a radio residency at the BBC.
You can also listen to this playlist on Spotify, just search for Browns Fashion to discover more music to enjoy.