Saffiyah Khan

Activist — Birmingham

Name, where are you from?
Saffiyah Khan, Birmingham.

Describe your style in three words?
Formal-wear Tank Girl.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Got to be The Specials in Brum last year, can't get much better than them and Toots lakeside in the summer at sunset.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
Black Flag pre-Rollins on one shoulder and post-Rollins on the other. Not that I make music. I'd like to be on the lineup, maybe I can compere a tombola between sets?

Which subcultures have influenced you?
Skinhead, Post Punk, New Wave, Punk, Northern Soul.
Punk got me into it all when I was young. I used to go to gigs on my own when I was 14/15 at the shady punk pubs in Birmingham because no one I knew was up for it. Then the others followed after, I think Post Punk next - Sisters Of Mercy have a special place in my heart. Northern Soul is the best to dance to I find, which is why I DJ mostly that.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Jesus? Pick his brains, what was the deal with Mary Magdalene? Would you consider yourself a leftist? What's God like? Where do you stand on Brexit?

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
Du Blonde is incredible and a good friend. We walk Pam Hogg catwalk together regularly. She is one of the most talented and multidisciplinary people I know and you should go check her out!

Your favourite independent venue?
The Night Owl in Birmingham.

The first track you played on repeat?
'Niko Kao Ja' by Šarlo Akrobata, my Mom was a punk in Bosnia so that's what she was listening to when I grew up.

A song that defines the teenage you?
'My War' by Black Flag - felt very 'me vs you' as most do at that age.

One record you would keep forever?
'The Night' by Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
'Sports' by Viagra Boys.

A song you wished you had written?
Something by Amy Winehouse because she seems to know what I'm thinking sometimes. I love that interview she did where she called out modern music for being so "f*ck you" and making lovers so replaceable, then she goes on to talk about how Soul was always about laying your heart out for someone and being vulnerable. She was strong for going against that grain. So I'll pick 'Back To Black' for the times I've done the same.

Best song to turn up loud?
Something to sing along to, 'Special Brew' by Bad Manners.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
Something New Wave. I relate to Devo: Extravagant and uncomfortable. I'll go with 'Mongoloid', although it's naturally problematic.

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
'You Really Got Me' by The Kinks.

Best song to end an all-nighter?
'The World Again' by Honey Townsend.

Any new bands you are into at the moment?
Finding new music is a slow process for me. Sleaford Mods and Viagra Boys are most recent.

Name, where are you from?
Saffiyah Khan, Birmingham.

Describe your style in three words?
Formal-wear Tank Girl.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Got to be The Specials in Brum last year, can't get much better than them and Toots lakeside in the summer at sunset.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
Black Flag pre-Rollins on one shoulder and post-Rollins on the other. Not that I make music. I'd like to be on the lineup, maybe I can compere a tombola between sets?

Which subcultures have influenced you?
Skinhead, Post Punk, New Wave, Punk, Northern Soul.
Punk got me into it all when I was young. I used to go to gigs on my own when I was 14/15 at the shady punk pubs in Birmingham because no one I knew was up for it. Then the others followed after, I think Post Punk next - Sisters Of Mercy have a special place in my heart. Northern Soul is the best to dance to I find, which is why I DJ mostly that.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Jesus? Pick his brains, what was the deal with Mary Magdalene? Would you consider yourself a leftist? What's God like? Where do you stand on Brexit?

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
Du Blonde is incredible and a good friend. We walk Pam Hogg catwalk together regularly. She is one of the most talented and multidisciplinary people I know and you should go check her out!

Your favourite independent venue?
The Night Owl in Birmingham.

The first track you played on repeat?
'Niko Kao Ja' by Šarlo Akrobata, my Mom was a punk in Bosnia so that's what she was listening to when I grew up.

A song that defines the teenage you?
'My War' by Black Flag - felt very 'me vs you' as most do at that age.

One record you would keep forever?
'The Night' by Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
'Sports' by Viagra Boys.

A song you wished you had written?
Something by Amy Winehouse because she seems to know what I'm thinking sometimes. I love that interview she did where she called out modern music for being so "f*ck you" and making lovers so replaceable, then she goes on to talk about how Soul was always about laying your heart out for someone and being vulnerable. She was strong for going against that grain. So I'll pick 'Back To Black' for the times I've done the same.

Best song to turn up loud?
Something to sing along to, 'Special Brew' by Bad Manners.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
Something New Wave. I relate to Devo: Extravagant and uncomfortable. I'll go with 'Mongoloid', although it's naturally problematic.

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
'You Really Got Me' by The Kinks.

Best song to end an all-nighter?
'The World Again' by Honey Townsend.

Any new bands you are into at the moment?
Finding new music is a slow process for me. Sleaford Mods and Viagra Boys are most recent.

The Specials ft Saffiyah Khan | Ten Commandments Live at The 100 Club

The Specials ft Saffiyah Khan | Ten Commandments (2019)

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