MUSE RADAR: MARIAMI

Mariami in Lower East Side, NYC. Photographed by Taja Sparks

Mariami in Lower East Side, NYC. Photographed by Taja Sparks

Mariami is a singer & songwriter based in Brooklyn, New York. A songstress of healing hymns illustrated by her meditative vision to create a feeling from the songs she creates. Mariami is from the Republic of Georgia & moved to the states to flee from a war where shortly after she discovered her voice in music. All of Mariami's music carries a sound filled with nostalgia & heavy memories of the past in a whimsical way. Hints of her heritage are alluded to in all of her storytelling which was a wonderful experience to hear about first hand for our first time meeting.

We met up for a day to shoot around NYC inspired by her story of a Georgian girl living in the hustle of New York. Upon meeting I was immediately greeted with a warm smile & her Amazonian height. Mariami is thoughtfully gentle & until you hear her sing live you would never imagine her voice comes from the same person. When Mariami sings live, her voice blows with strength heavy in experience. One of the things that I loved about my time with Mariami was her undoubted devotion to her vision. She spends copious amounts of time articulating the vision of her craft, the purpose behind her music & the feeling she wants to portray for her listeners. 

***

How do you find/source your inspiration?

Listening to classics is a big go to. Depending on the type of song I am writing, I try to create a listening + energetic atmosphere that contains the DNA of my creative goal, it then becomes a lot easier to “pluck” vibes from the ethos and create!

How has music changed your life as an immigrant from Georgia?

I actually discovered that I was a songwriter on my first trip back to Georgia after immigrating. I was 19 and a sophomore at Emerson College in Boston. When I went back, my heart literally exploded with emotion. I was overcome with nostalgia, memories, family, love, the breathtaking landscapes of my country -- I was in a state of Euphoria and I channeled it into a song called “Mother of Mine” and the rest is history. Everything I’ve written since then always contains the slightest hint of culture, I can’t help it :)

What has migrating from Georgia to America taught you & how has it changed since you've been here?

When I first moved to America, I remember starting school in Vermont and as a young girl I always wanted to dress, talk and act like the American girls. I felt so foreign. Then I grew up, went back to Georgia and was like Oh No! I’ve been missing out on all of this! I want to be like the Georgian Girls! I then came back to America, and wanted to fuse the cultures together and be the ultimate Georgian American. But very recently, I realized I just want to be myself! It sounds so trite but it’s true. It’s lead me down a very curious path of self discovery.

How has the election affected you & your family?

Alarm. Discomfort. Coming together. Support. Do my best to keep the converstation in a positive and progressive space no matter what the topic. Only way to drive out anger is love. Words are powerful, using them with grace + gumption.

Do you believe that music is a source of love & how do you visualize your craft for relaying this message?

Music is a source of immense love. It’s powers are grand. I can’t imagine my life without it and I feel priviledged to use my instrument to create good in this world.

Favorite musicians & a favorite memory you have listening to them.

Pink Floyd -- car rides with my dad in Vermont when I was young, we both loved Pink Floyd and would blast it
J Cole -- recent album, 3 times stream back to back on a first listen, couldn’t get enough it was so good

Drake So Far Gone Mixtape -- Soundtrack to my college. I felt like he was singing to me, serious feels 

FOLLOW MARIAMI ON INSTAGRAM