This Swedish R&B prodigy caught the ear of Prince, has been sampled by Drake, and now explores her Persian roots
With her honey-sweet vocals and twinkling R&B production, Swedish singer-songwriter Snoh Aalegra has been in the music game since 2001, when she signed an artist development deal with Sony Sweden aged 13. Since then she has honed her craft and garnered fans including hip-hop stars Common and RZA, as well as gaining a co-sign from Drake when he sampled one of her tracks. Aalegra has worked with Kanye West producer No ID, and her strikingly raw storytelling and powerful vocals caught the ear of Prince, who tracked her down when she only had two songs online and became her mentor until his death in 2016.
Real name Snoh Nowrozi – her parents are Iranian – Aalegra’s gorgeous new album, Ugh, Those Feels Again, is a wry nod to her 2016 debut, Feels. The record interrogates her relationships and the alienation she feels living between LA and Sweden as a woman of Persian descent. Tracks such as I Want You Around luxuriate in deep yearning.
The album’s slinky, old-school R&B (she cites Mariah Carey as an influence) looks set to push Snoh Aalegra to her biggest audience yet. Yet she is no longer concerned with validation. As she told Goat website: “I’ve experienced industry politics and… people telling me I’m never going to make it. I’ll never listen. I’m doing me.”