In a video from Smirnoff as part of their We’re Open campaign, hip-hop artist Nadia Tehran met Radio 1Xtra’s Sian Anderson in London to discuss her life, music, and inspiration. We’re Open celebrates inclusivity and diversity, shining a light on those who are more inclusive than the world around them. Nadia is a perfect choice for the project, being proud of her second-generation Swedish-Iranian heritage, and making music that explores personal and political identity.
In the video Nadia meets Sian, and the two discuss her background, “Growing up, I didn’t know where to belong,” Nadia says, speaking of her upbringing in a small Christian town in Sweden, “I often felt like an outsider. A stranger to every situation.” It’s no wonder then, that her music is all about going out and being proud of who you are, as well as being open to all kinds of people. She describes her music as borderless, saying, “I’ve always felt borderless. It’s not about how you look, it’s an energy. We’re all together in this feeling of belonging and not belonging.”
Earlier this year Nadia released her first EP ‘Life is Cheap, Death is Free,’ which featured the single ‘Refugee‘. In a daring move, the single’s music video was shot in Iran, an illegal production due to laws that prohibit solo female performance, challenging restrictions on women. “I never saw myself being like a role model or having this cause that I’m fighting for in that way. But after this project I’m actually accepting this role,”she tells Sian in the video for Smirnoff, who are using the We’re Open campaign to show how important inclusivity is and how music has the power to unify people. Nadia sums it up; “My music binds me to people from different countries and backgrounds and cultures. It brings us all together.”
Watch the video below: