Marinah, 10 years after Ojos de Brujo: “I boycotted my fame” | Culture


Marinah, former singer of Ojos de Brujo, in March 2017 in Barcelona.
Marinah, former singer of Ojos de Brujo, in March 2017 in Barcelona.Massimiliano Minocri / THE COUNTRY

From her time as the vocalist of Ojos de Brujo Marinah not only retains her alternative appearance and the conspiratorial look. Marina Abad (Valencia, 49 years old), the voice of that Barcelona band for a decade, also remains in the flow of lyrics and messages that she launched back in 2000, in which she spoke of equality and respect. The struggle of women stars in her new job, Heroines (Nacional Records, 2021), the fourth solo after Afrolailo (2017).

After spending the hardest confinement in an apartment near Valencia, he moved to Formentera last summer, where he already lived when he was “very young” and keeps good friends. The singer, who is usually very active on Women’s Day, tells by videoconference that this year on March 8 she caught her traveling to promote the new album, which came out on March 12.

“I am a survivor, my mother was one of the first junkies, one of the first to use heroin in Spain”

It is blunt when the importance of current feminism is questioned: “To say that today there is equality is a truism. When you talk about feminism and leaving on 8-M, it is not because of you or your friends, it is because of the woman in the global context, not only because of the type of machismo that we live here, but because of the type of patriarchal system that is sending this planet to hell ”. And she adds: “Historically women have been oppressed and ignored. It cannot be denied, just as racism cannot be denied ”.

The launch of Heroines, scheduled for March 2020, it was affected by the pandemic. “This album is an epic endurance exercise.” Based on the slogan “to exist is to win”, he articulates in his new work three great tributes. On the one hand, the everyday heroines or, as she clarifies, “any woman, I don’t care if she’s a cleaner or mayor, invisible or visible, because they crush us anyway.” On the other, the diversity of artists, represented in the nine collaborators who participate in the album —from Rocío Márquez to Brisa Fenoy, the Mexican Niña Dioz or the Guinean Nakany Kanté. The last tribute of this work is to the survivors, those who, although they lost, also fought: “I am a survivor, my mother was one of the first junkies, one of the first to consume heroin in Spain. I am the daughter of that, I have survived the downfall of heroin in my life.

In the pure Ojos de Brujo style, the album travels through various musical genres, from the most urban such as rap and electrocumbia to the most deeply rooted, such as flamenco, rumba or el dembow, the rhythm of Jamaican origin from which reggaeton starts. On the particular mix that led her in the past to achieve a Latin Grammy with Ojos de Brujo, Marinah confesses: “My virtues are my failures. It is very difficult for me to go deeper and spend 10 years studying something; I like to peck more ”. A flamenco student for a time, she soon realized that in that world she loved she was not happy and that she would never be happy within a single genre or label: “I have always felt like an alternative artist, when I was able to achieve fame I have boycotted it myself and have done the opposite of what I was supposed to do ”.

Marinah acknowledges that the pandemic and the restrictions that come with it are holding back a tour. “A concert with a mask, with everyone sitting four meters away and unable to get up … I have to do a lot of work to see that positively. Even so, he assures that he will consider it: “I am going to make an effort to try to make a trip a little more intimate, and present a repertoire where I can sit for an hour and a half.” Although he warns: “I have never sat on a stage.”


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