Singer, songwriter, producer and all-round artist Jozem is no stranger to diving deep into the psyche of oneself. Venturing in between the folds, he depicts and dissects the many layers, thoughts and feelings we traverse as human beings on the planet at this time. Referring to his own unique journey throughout this life he writes with flair, depth and sophistication often channeling lyrics via a philosophical and spiritual lens.
Having left Nairobi, Kenya in his early teens, Jozem’s family traveled across the world to Toronto Canada, where he now resides. Poignantly describing this impact, Jozem shares,
“I have felt like an outsider my entire life, whether it was because of my introversion, being a refugee/foreign, at times because of my blackness or my queerness or any combination thereof. Along the way, I’ve met kindred spirits that live unapologetically, showing you that it is ok to be who you are without compromise and to be proud of the things that make you different.”
His exclusive perspective is perhaps best demonstrated in the new visual for single ‘Foreign’ premiered below. Taken from his entirely self produced, debut album it came to me in a dream, released in May, ‘Foreign’ feels ancient, understated and incredibly evocative. Offering a glimpse into the shadowy recesses of Jozems mind the video is dark, moody and gorgeously cinematic, exuding texture, ambience and thought-provoking symbolism.
Detailing his thought process behind ‘Foreign’ Jozem explains,
“When we are young and impressionable, we learn to conform and mold ourselves into a form that is acceptable to others. When alone and often sleepless at night, we sometimes get to a crossroads where we are left unable to hide and are forced to face ourselves – our true selves – and face our demons, really confronting the elements of our being that we have been taught to hide but that are ultimately part of who we are.
Helmed by Director Yù (Jessamine Fok), the video for ‘foreign’ highlights these themes of duality of self, a conflict between how you present yourself to the world and who you truly are, a recognition that the persona you have been putting up for the world to see may not be who you really are or who you want to be…”
Eerie and ethereal, Jozem’s musical style is the epitome of explorative alternative RnB, it’s an intoxicating concoction of sound with golden threads of emotive neo-soul, dusted in a warm Lo-fi haze and subtle reverberating electronics. Partnered with his gentle, authentic nature and unwavering willingness to show his vulnerability and dig beneath the surface, Jozem offers a rare avenue of connection with his listeners unlike any other. Simply speaking, Jozem creates art that speaks directly to the soul.
Watch the video premiere for ‘Foreign’ below: