Thursday, October 07, 2010


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Music that makes dictators tremble and fundamentalists angry.

Listen to the Banned is a unique collection of contemporary songs by artists who have been censored, persecuted, taken to court, imprisoned and even tortured for a very simple reason – their music.

Music brings joy and gives a voice to the “voiceless” - a power that earns the condemnation of intolerant religious leaders and dictators alike. 

Presented by Freemuse and Deeyah, the compilation is a unique musical statement by artists who are united in one single, important issue – the protection of the freedom of musical expression, a freedom many take for granted.

Their stories are told in the accompanying booklet. They include the story of Lapiro de Mbanga, who is currently imprisoned in Cameroon for a song critical of his country’s President and the story of Mahsa Vahdat, prevented from performing solo shows in her native country Iran.  Also included are Chiwoniso Maraire (Zimbabwe), Farhad Darya (Afghanistan), Marcel Khalife (Lebanon), Tiken Jah Fakoly (Cote d’Ivoire), Abazar Hamid (Sudan), Kamilya Jubran (Israel / Palestine), Kurash Sultan (Uighuristan), Ferhat Tunc (Turkey), Aziza Brahim (Western Sahara), Haroon Bacha (Pakistan), Fadal Dey (Cote d’Ivoire) and Amal Murkus (Israel / Palestine).
Freemuse is the only international organization dedicated to protecting musicians and composers’ right to freedom of expression. The CD has been compiled by Deeyah, an artist who has stopped performing after having endured constant intimidation and physicals threats throughout her career.

The album is being released in the Western Hemisphere by Valley Entertainment on October 26, 2010 and available now at 

“This is a collection of songs from artists around the world who have faced censorship or had their music banned. These artists and other like them in the different corners of the world must have the right to exist and freely express their feelings and opinions through their art. We can not allow our freedom of expression to be compromised. Music must not be silenced”        
- Deeyah

For more information, please contact Eric Mace at Valley Entertainment via email,, or by phone, 1-212-580-9200 ext. 11.