Introducing… Naghmeh and the Southern Shores

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Naghmeh Shafiei is an Iranian Canadian singer-songwriter, and the frontwoman of Montreal based post-modern rock band, Naghmeh and the Southern Shores.

Her musical journey began in San Francisco and developed through performing in Europe and South America. After a few international collaborations and a fulfilling solo career, she moved back to Montreal where she started to perform with a band, and recorded, co-produced, and released her debut album this summer with the Southern Shores.

The band’s sound blends different eras of music into a funky, punky, disco-rock. With throaty melodies, satirical lyrics, and a touch of triumphant rock n’ roll, Naghmeh and the Southern Shores claim they will “transform your internal turmoil into a whimsical dance.”

Following the release of the album, the group recorded a live video of the song, Millionaire’s Insomnia, recorded in one of Montreal’s beautiful summer installations, the MR-63.

“The video was recorded on a very special day,” explains Naghmeh “As I said farewell to Seth (lead guitar, who moved back to Minneapolis) and welcomed Kevin Britten (drums) to her band. Recorded and edited by Nick Jewell at MR-63, it was a promise to stay connected through the magic of music. With the new reality we live in, this promise is one we extend to our community, and everyone around the world struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Now more than ever, we call upon music to connect us all, across borders and time zones, walls and windows. Time, and memory.”

Watch the video below:

Naghmeh says “Millionaire’s Insomnia was a simple journal entry and meditation exercise during a business trip to Vancouver, while my toxic boss was disrespecting me, and threatening me and my dignity. It was intended to calm my nerves. At the time, I did not have the resources to recognize gaslighting, misogyny and racism when I saw it. However, this song now brings me back to that moment with the perspective of a warrior who turned that horrible feeling of worthlessness to a beautiful song that I have shared with people around the world. 

This song has been played by every version of my band from the very beginning. I first played it as a solo musician, and debuted the song at the Village Market open mic, an open mic in San Francisco that I produced. I then played it with my first band, the Transcontinentals, in San Francisco, until I moved back home to Montreal. I performed it under the name Naghmeh and the Sams during my Reykavik tour at Iceland Airwaves and in San Francisco at the historic Hotel Utah, Amnesia, and Neck of the Woods. I also brought the song to Buenos Aires and El Chalten, where I toured solo. Once I founded the Southern Shores here in Montreal, this was an easy favourite for the entire band. And as time goes on, I continue to play this song in all its nostalgic glory. 

I am so happy that I got to record this particular rendition, as my old and new bandmate performed a passing of the torch ceremony. It serves as a constant reminder that no matter how horrible THIS moment feels, you can look back at it at a later point, and be reminded of the love and support that you get. While I rarely ever think of the horrible words my old job left me with, I am constantly reminded of the beautiful people who were there to catch me as I burned and rebuilt.”

For more information about the band:

Photo credit – Roya Ismaelli

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