Najwa Mahiaddin
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Najwa Mahiaddin

New York City, New York, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

New York City, New York, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Solo R&B Electro


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Aurora EP Launch"

er songs because of how significantly different her style is from other then rising young woman indie infers such as Yunalis Zarai and Zee Avi. Najwa was very much a jazz/blues singer…her soulful tunes are easy to be followed and remembered, and at times, are very romantic or witty. Last Tuesday on the 24th June, I attended the Najwa Mahiaddin EP Launch located at the hip space “Ruang at Subang” which is in SS18 Subang Jaya. The gathering was entirely meant to be “small” or “intimate” however over 10o people showed-up and even more tried to squeeze!

The big group that showed up were mainly family, friends and long-time fans whom all gathered to hear-out her showcase for the Aurora EP which contained a few new songs including Seri Mersing which was previously sung by famed Malaysian songstress Datuk Siti Nurhaliza and Datuk Sharifah Aini. Seri Mersing is a popular ghazal folk song in the Malay culture. Adding her own youthful flavour to it, the song sounds almost new and unique to her. Najwa is currently back from the US, where she attended Berklee. I really love her previous album, Innocent Soul, and thus I was really looking forward to her new album since she have been keeping a low profile she for quite some time to focus on her studies. It’s great to see (and hear) her new songs. The new EP which is sold at RM25.00 (though I am not entirely sure where to get them right now), shows Najwa’s continuous effort to share her honest musical talent with the Malaysian music lovers, although she is now mainly based in the city of New York.

All the best to Najwa and her band, may she continue to produce unique individual songs for souls like me to listen to. Support the local talents! - Lux Democrats

"Review: Najwa live at the Bee"

A dreamlike and triumphant homecoming show.
Najwa Mahiaddin has been silently gaining ground in the local music scene as one of the few female singers to embrace R&B wholeheartedly. While her early tracks are at times clichéd (“Got To Go”), over the years, the tracks that she has released since then are increasingly layered with thoughtful instrumentation (“Innocent Soul”). Aurora, her latest EP, proves to be a solid foothold in her attempt at melding her soulful rich voice with challenging and unique sound.
Performing at The Bee last week as part of their Upfront series, Najwa presented a set that mixed new and old songs, and a few covers of her favourite tunes. The show started with the first track from her latest EP, “Lover”, a calm yet exasperated plea to a lost love.
Her sensuous voice featured prominently in this track, delivering pathos without overdoing it, allowing the subtle droning and static noise throughout the song to convey the exhaustion with failed relationships. It is a terse song, but its abrupt end worked to its favour.
In “Before”, another track from the Aurora EP, her preoccupation with former lovers again takes centre stage, but instead of frustration, the song expresses forgiveness and strength. Her maturity as a composer is clear in this song. Clear, steady beats provide a solid foundation upon which a catchy electro hook loops in the background.
The sombre tone of the performance gave way to the more catchy song “Jealousy” later in the set, with a memorable chorus and a bass line that elicited more exuberance.
“Wonderland”, punctuated with piano beats, was performed with a hallucinatory feel to already dreamy lyrics (If you’re going down, the ra-bbit hole // If you’re going down, down below).
The set included two covers: Pretty Girls by Little Dragon and Heaven on the Ground by Emily King and Jose James. Najwa’s cover of the former is markedly more energetic than the original version, surprisingly.
But “save the best for the last” seemed to be the order of the night: Najwa closed with “Floatin”, a meticulously composed song that showcased her triumphant vocals and penchant for dramatic effects. The slow, drony pulse prominently faded in and out in the beginning of the song, only to give way to the chaotic beats and aggressive synth towards the end.
The performance was testament to Najwa’s progression since her early songs. Despite lyrics that very much echo the same sentiments and themes, the music that colours those expressions are different and challenging. It was certainly a live show that should have won her many new fans.

Audi bin Ali -

"The Aurora of Najwa Mahiaddin"

By Shah Shamshiri

THE evening was filled with excitement. The place was Ruang – a space located in the suburbs of Subang Jaya, big enough for an intimate showcase. The occasion was the release party for the Aurora EP, and the crowd was full of anticipation. Then came the moment that everyone had been waiting for. The singer appeared on stage and sang from the heart. And just like every time she shared her gift with an audience – they were mesmerised.

Such is the power of Najwa Mahiaddin’s voice. The daughter of Malaysia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was finally back in her home country after furthering her education at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Armed with a Berklee music degree, the former winner of the Best English Song (for Got To Go) and Best New Artiste award at the 2011 Anugerah Industri Muzik (the Malaysian Grammy Awards equivalent) looks ready to dazzle her fans.

With the release of her latest five-track EP Aurora, Najwa explores a different musical path where she taps into a darker side, songs that are heavily laced with electronic influence and arrangements.

“It is an experiment of sorts. It’s something new which I am trying out, just to see how it will fair. I know that most of my fans and followers are used to the stuff I did in my previous album Innocent Soul, which was a predominantly R&B, soul and jazz music album. But I believe as an artiste, I must be versatile and be willing to explore new grounds as it is only natural that I progress and grow musically,” said the 28-year-old artiste who holds a degree in Contemporary Writing and Production.

During the introductory showcase of Aurora, Najwa performed all the songs in the EP along with a few other hits, coupled with a new self-image befitting her newfound sound.

I am actually quite comfortable with this new look. Yes, it is a bit ‘dark’ compared to my previous image from the first album, but I actually like it. However, I can’t really say whether my image will change for my next album, but I can safely say that I am very comfortable with this concept for now,” explained the talented vocalist.

Aurora which features four English tracks also includes one special Malay number which is a remake of the classic Malay ghazal song Seri Mersing. The beautiful traditional song which originates from Malaysia’s southern state of Johor is a timeless classic that has been performed by singers for decades. In fact, two of the nation’s biggest pop divas, namely the late Datuk Sharifah Aini, as well as Datuk Siti Nurhaliza have recorded their own versions of this old hit. Najwa, however, chose to give a very different interpretation of the song.

Najwa_Aurora_Cover resize“I know that I will receive all kinds of feedback regarding my re-interpretation of the song, but I hope my listeners can understand that it is all part of the sound reflected in the Aurora EP. The reason why I chose Seri Mersing in the first place was because back in college, I was in a band consisting of members from various countries and they all shared their famous traditional songs and music. So I thought it was just apt that I shared one of our most popular traditional tunes, which coincidentally comes from my parents’ native state of Johor. So, I recorded this new Seri Mersing for them to hear. And you know what? They loved it!” Najwa elaborated.

Fully produced in the United States, Aurora didn’t take too long to create, although the challenge back then was trying to juggle her time. As she was planning to record the EP, she had already moved to New York to be involved in other musical projects and performances.

“My producer for Aurora was in Boston, so while I was in New York I had to find time to fly back to Boston to complete the project. Thankfully, I managed to finish it despite my busy schedule,” added Najwa.

Aurora the EP is currently available for sale on iTunes, Amazon mp3, as well as via streaming on Spotify. - Red Carpet

"A different side of Najwa"

Singer-songwriter Najwa will be showcasing a different side to her “soul”.

Soul singer Najwa Mahiaddin will be doing a different kind of performance from her usual intimate style shows. The 28-year-old is set to sing onstage at Plenary Hall, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre for the Forget Me Not, Konsert Amal DiRaja hosted by the Alzheimer’s Disease Foundation of Malaysia (ADFM) in December.

She will be performing several songs with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, which will be conducted by Eugene Pook.

Najwa, who recently donned the hijab after her return from Mecca, has been doing her usual gigs (last month she performed at Anugerah Planet Muzik and she will also be singing at Urbanscapes in December) in between flying to Shanghai to practise with the orchestra.

We caught up with her recently to ask about the upcoming concert and her personal style.

Working with a symphony orchestra is an exciting yet daunting prospect. Has this project been an eye-opener for you in terms of music arrangement?

During my years at Berklee College of Music, I had already been exposed to writing for the orchestra. One of my final projects was to compose music for a chamber orchestra and we even had to conduct the orchestra during the recording of my piece. It was such a great experience.

Currently, I’m so thrilled to be given the chance to work with one of the best symphony orchestras in Asia for this project. I’m really excited to listen to the orchestral version of my songs.

How many songs will you be singing in the second part of the concert? All originals?

I will be singing around seven songs. It will be a mixture of originals as well as classic favourites by P. Ramlee.

I guess it’s different from working with a band as it involves more people. With the band, I am able to improvise more during live shows and it’s easier for them to follow.

Working with an orchestra, you have to be really sure of the form and arrangement as there is no room to mess up. Paying attention to the conductor is also very important.

How did this partnership come about and is this your first time?

Yes, this is my first time. I was contacted by ADFM while I was still in New York. I’m always happy to get involved with charity projects like this, as one of my goals is to be able to help people in need through my music. Getting the opportunity to work with Shanghai Symphony orchestra was a bonus for me.

Do you have any classical music favourites or favourite composers?

I don’t have a favourite composer, but one of my favourite pieces is Symphony No. 5: Adagietto by Gustav Mahler. It is such a beautiful piece and a definite tear-jerker.

What is your general sense of style? Who are your style icons?

Minimalist and edgy. I’m always wearing neutral colours. Black, especially! I really admire my brother, Farhan Yassin’s (also known as Moslem Priest) look. He wears the songkok with everything and it has become his signature style.

Has your style changed since wearing the hijab?

I haven’t really been wearing the hijab for too long and with my busy schedule, I have not been able to shop. Honestly, I have just been wearing what I always wear except now I use an inner, also known as the ninja and a headscarf or a hoodie. That, and I don’t use skirts shorter than ankle length anymore.

Who are your favourite designers?

I haven’t thought much about that, but I do go for Rick Owens, Haider Ackermann and Helmut Lang a lot.

Where can we expect to see Najwa professionally in the next five years?

Hopefully spreading my music across the world. I would love to do a world tour and that’s something I’m working towards right now. -


Still working on that hot first release.



Najwa Mahiaddin is an award winning vocalist and songwriter hailing from Malaysia.

Discovering music at the tender age of 3, she found a home that allowed her to fully express her
thoughts and emotions through lyric and song.

In 2011 the Malaysian “Soulstress” released her debut R&B/neo-soul album Innocent Soul which won
multiple awards; Best New Artiste and Best English Local Song “Got to Go” at the AIM 2011 awards
(Anugerah Industri Muzik)

Adamant on pursuing music as a career, Najwa enrolled in the prestigious Berklee College of Music
where she graduated in 2012, majoring in contemporary writing and production. Najwa then moved to
New York and returned from a three year hiatus with a darker undertone in her music, experimenting
with somber and minimalistic echoes over the usual warm piano accompaniments. Thus the Aurora EP is
born; her sounds shamelessly stripped down into a bare electronic setting, her soul’s deepest shadows

Switching her playlist from Jill Scott, Erykah Badu and Billie Holiday to the likes of Little Dragon, James
Blake and Emily King, whilst also braving the isolated icy paths of New York City may have had a little
something to do with it. Aurora seeks to reaffirm her Malaysian roots by blending traditional elements
from her Malay and Indian influenced heritage with a more current soundtrack. Najwa’s first single off
Aurora, “Seri Mersing” boldly weaves the ancestral ghazal folk song into a contemporary orchestra-
tion, intimating a sacrilegious cultural intercross of the old and the new.

‘Music is an extension of one’s soul’,

Najwa believes that through art, the audience is able to experience a visible and audible expression of
the artists’ emotion. From her award-winning debut R&B/neo-soul album ‘Innocent Soul’, to her dark
and moody sophomore EP, ‘Aurora’, Najwa’s music seeks to reaffirm her Malaysian roots but also pay
homage to the roller-coaster experiences she has had living alone in America. Najwa and her music
are on a league of its own, set to put Malaysia on the global music map.

Najwa Mahiaddin is set to record and release her third album in 2016. For any enquiries, please
contact her manager, Razlan Shah ( , +60162021882) 

Band Members