New releases from UAE-based artists Alexis, Saffron

Dubai-based teenage singer-songwriter Saffron. (Supplied)
Updated 11 February 2019

New releases from UAE-based artists Alexis, Saffron

  • Here are the new releases from UAE-based music artists
  • Alexia and Saffron are both under Universal MENA deals

DUBAI: R&B singer-songwriter and producer Alexis has released her sophomore album “This Is Me…” on Universal Music MENA — her first record for the label and almost a decade on from the release of her debut album, 2010’s “Speak Love Life Lessons,” which was released by EMI, and which spawned an album of remixes — “Speak Loud” — in 2014.
Alexis told Arab News that she comes from a family with “roots in North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula” and that she remembers growing up with the music of Umm Kulthum playing in the house. She found herself drawn to female vocalists.
“There was something about powerful women and the effect of song that really resonated with me, and it stuck with me,” she said.
Her mainly self-produced album (“Love Will…” is a collaboration with Grammy-winning producers Carvin & Ivan) is, according to the label, “a suite of material that gives an unambiguous and candid view into her life,” imbuing “her signature R&B vocals across Middle Eastern rhythms, trap beats, bluegrass banjos and symphonic string arrangements.”

“This Is Me…” was released last Friday, and Alexis said she has already received feedback from people in the US, Africa, the Middle East, Spain, the Far East, and Russia. Audience response is one of the things she most appreciates about her music career, she explained.
“It’s a communion that is like nothing else. I love that something that comes from just a dream or a thought can affect people that I don’t know from such diverse backgrounds. That still amazes me. And I don’t think I will ever become jaded about it,” she said. “That’s powerful.”
Another Universal MENA artist, Dubai-based teenage singer-songwriter Saffron (Collins) recently released her latest single, “I Liked You.” Musically, Saffron told Arab News, the track was inspired by Colombian-American artist Kali Uchis’ “Dead To Me,” particularly that song’s “catchy drum and bass line.”
As for the lyrics, she expained: “The song delves into the reality of rejection and how having a crush can make you feel so good and so awful at the same time.”
Both “This Is Me…” and “I Liked You” are out now on all major digital music platforms.

The Six: Arab and Muslim models in New York

Updated 16 February 2019

The Six: Arab and Muslim models in New York

DUBAI: Arab and Muslim models took the runways by storm at New York Fashion Week, which closed on Sunday in the Big Apple.

Bella Hadid

The Palestinian-American model was a smash during the Michael Kors show, which paid tribute to 1970s fashion, rocking a sparkling black blazer with feathers on the sleeves.

Gigi Hadid

The hectic supermodel lifestyle didn’t get in the way of Bella’s sister, who was seen on the streets in her retro runway hairdo after walking the Michael Kors show.

Halima Aden

This Muslim model turned heads when she closed the Christian Cowan show with an oversized black and neon pantsuit and a chain-link rhinestone hijab.

Noor Tagouri

This Libyan-American journalist took her confidence to the next level when she decided to put down her pen and walk the runway for US brand Rebecca Minkoff.

Nora Attal

The British-Moroccan model kicked off the week in elegant leatherwork by French brand Longchamp and walked the runway for Brandon Maxwell.

Shanina Shaik

The Australian model, who was raised a Muslim and whose father is half-Saudi, modelled for Vietnamese designer Nguyen Cong Tri.