PRESS & NEWS

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“Morocco's Jazz Jewel. Singing in Berber, Moroccan Arabic, English and French [Malika Zarra] is redefining the term fusion and adding her unique sound to the world”

 - CNN International “African Voices”

"Throughout the evening, the cadences of Arabic and Berber dialects sat easily within the sophisticated arrangements, as did the modalities of the melodies. By the end of her set, the audience was thoroughly entranced." 

- Michael Shapiro, Huffington Post

"Blending the warmth of American soul music with tricky North African rhythms, intricately yet tersely arranged, jazz-inflected melodies and lyrics in Berber, Arabic, French and English, Zarra has carved out a niche for herself which manages to be completely unique yet very accessible." 

- Ludic Culture


“Through the beauty of her voice and the magic of her compositions Malika Zarra reminds us of the musical diversity of our ancestral homeland, Africa.  Close your eyes and listen.” - Randy Weston

“Zarra’s timing is sharp, her command irrefutable and her instincts, among them the knowledge of when to lie back, the mark of a leader." - Jeff Tamarkin, Jazz Times

"Zarra crosses musical, cultural, and linguistic boundaries with ease, creating a delicious sound centered in but not bounded by her ethnicity." - Soundroots

How different it sounds is exactly what attracted me to it — she's using Moroccan music with jazz." -Betto Arcos

 

Malika Zarra is a rare and special voice, a natural born musician who sings as easily as we breathe. Her newest CD Berber Taxi is a masterpiece, every track a gem. Filled with creative arrangements, soaring improvisations, beautiful poetry and of course Malika's gorgeous voice, it is one of the most exciting CDs in recent years. A natural blend of her life experiences, it transcends all borders and creates an enchanting new world filled with honesty, imagination, craft, purity, and passion. Malika speaks to us all in a language of love.

- John Zorn

"Boldly experimental, bringing in Berber chanting, dark North African harmonies, and a wholly original sensibility."

- Afropop Worldwide

Malika Zarra, a relatively rare Moroccan Berber woman singer-songwriter, composer, and producer, appeared Friday night, the 6th, with her band during Winter JazzFest at the Zinc Bar. There were long lines of hopeful fans at the gate, waiting sometimes in vain to hear her live. Ms. Zarra has long been captivated by American jazz. Her ululating, restrained mezzo-soprano vocals wove Berber traditional melodies and North African 'chabi pop' with syncopated jazz improvisations in impeccable timing. Ms. Zarra's emotional range and complex intensities can be heard on her recent CD "Berber Taxi."  -  Evangeline Kim

"A fantastic record...she's really wonderful! 

-KPFK, Los Angeles - Betto Arcos

 

Besprechung Kieler Nachrichten magazine

Das zweite Album der aus Marok-ko stammenden Sängerin ist wie eine Ansichtskarte ihrer Aufent-haltsorte in ihrem noch jungen Leben. Elf Stücke spiegeln einen einfühlsamen bis mitreißenden Klangkosmos, basierend auf folk-loristischen Elementen ihrer Ur-sprungsheimat, angereichert durch ihren Aufenthalt in Frank-reich und ihr...

-Von Dieter Hanisch

Zarra crosses musical, cultural, and linguistic boundaries with ease, creating a delicious sound centered in but not bounded by her ethnicity. - Soundroots

"A really sensual voice"  - PRI, Marco Werman

Moroccan vocalist Malika Zarra is arriving at this crossroads from the opposite direction, infusing the music of her native culture with jazz - Phil Freeman

 “Zarra is captivating, with a soft voice and a hushed style of scat-singing that makes it sound like she is casting spells” 

- The Gardian UK

Malika Zarra, du Maroc à New York

Sur la planète musicale marocaine émergent des talents originaux, tels l’auteur-compositeur Malika Zarra, installée à New York. L’originalité de cette artiste qui vient de sortir son premier album, On the ebony road est d’être l’une des rares femmes instrumentistes et compositeur.

This Moroccan lass honed her craft at home in North Africa, in Paris, and continues to do so in USA. It’s a very impressive CD and should place her in a good position for further “world-jazz” adventures.

...Malika Zarra’s “On the Ebony Road”. This Moroccan lass honed her craft at home in North Africa, in Paris, and continues to do so in USA, where she currently resides. Zarra’s mixture of native Berber and English tunes, and a sultry, seductive jazz-influenced delivery puts her in a unique category. It’s a very impressive CD and should place her in a good position for further “world-jazz” adventures. Tunes such as ‘Run’, ‘Joky Heart’, ‘Mchina’ also bring out the talents of drummer Harvey Wirht and oud player Brahim Fribgane...  - EJAZZ

Malika Zarra, Moroccan vocalist, was a wonderful ambassador for her country’s music. She sang in native Moroccan, French, and English, with a healthy dose of scat. The music was similar to Afro-Caribbean, Flamenco, and Greek genres, with exotic percussion, and vocal dynamics that intensified as the evening grew late. Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower

Mit ihrer inspirierender Stimme , hat die Sängerin u. Komponistin Malika Zarra nicht nur ein wunderschönes Album eingespielt sondern auch ihren Platz in der Jazz / Weltmusik Szene bestätigt. Das hoch qulitative Album , in dem sie von jungen Musikern der New Yorker Jazzszene begleitet wird , singt sie in englisch ,französisch ,arabisch. Die in Marrokko geborene u. in Frankreich aufgewachsene... - Digitale Jazz-Zeitung

Bewitched forever...."Malika Zarra's voice is like a gentle sigh of Zephyr in a hot Moroccan night. It awakes the deepest feelings of love and harmony. Even the hidden desires of a burning passion. It reminds the mellow blending of oriental flavors and western anxiety of a Cole Porter song: It brings back a night of tropical splendor... Once you've heard her sweet spell, you're bewitched forever."  Enzo Capua

 “Malika Zarra, a Moroccan living in the United States, makes her own jazz, a jazz where the darbouka and ‘ud are happily integrated.

Zarra promises to be a pioneer in the advent of an authentic Maghreb jazz.”  - Le Matin, Morocco 

 

Genuinely pure and straight ...

”I thoroughly enjoyed every second of it !
It’s really refreshing to hear music that is genuinely pure and straight from the heart which is how music is coming off here in my opinion. I really like your sound, sense of time and phrasing” - 
Taxi