Naima Shalhoub is a Lebanese-American musician, educator, restorative justice practitioner and cultural steward. Through sound and story-telling she seeks to create an atmosphere that invites us closer to sacred remembrance, justice and healing.
Naima has opened for renowned scholars and musicians such as Angela Davis, Cornel West, Zap Mama, and Les Nubians. Her music has been featured in the San Francisco Chronicle, Al Jazeera, The Mercury News, KQED, East Bay Express, KALW, Upworthy, Pop Matters, San Francisco Classical Voice, Electronic Intifada and Arab News.
She has toured internationally and performed in spaces such as the Great American Music Hall, Yoshi’s and San Quentin State Prison. Naima has risen to prominence in the global music scene as an interdisciplinary artist and abolitionist restorative justice leader who often works and performs in places to disrupt isolation and confinement. Her debut album Live in San Francisco County Jail, was recorded in 2015 with incarcerated women she sat with in circle for weekly music and freedom sessions.
Naima’s most recent album, Siphr, conceptualized in an apartment in Beirut and released in 2020 thanks to an artist residency with Women's Audio Mission and support from Restoration Village Arts, was praised by San Francisco Classical Voice as “an unbreakable chain linking freedom, captivity, joy, sorrow, pain, separation, identity, political protest, and spiritual power.” Co-produced by Tarik “Excentrik” Kazaleh, internationally known Palestinian-American MC, producer and multi-instrumentalist and long-standing musical collaborator, the music videos for the record were also filmed by Kazaleh, and covered from outlets such as Pop Matters and Scene Noise.
Drawing from her ancestral and cultural origins, which span Lebanon, Sierra Leone and California–and citing influences from Billie Holiday to Mercedes Sosa, Erykah Badu and Fairouz–Naima’s music is situated in a lineage of soulful, live instrumentation, and global liberation movements. Her work often highlights the woven fabric of indigenous freedom movements from Palestine, Lebanon, South Africa, Turtle Island, the African diaspora and beyond. Within this fabric she envisions art as story-telling; a vessel of weaving interconnection, voice, wisdom, remembrance, agency and power.
Naima Shalhoub earned a master’s degree in postcolonial anthropology with a focus on social and cultural transformation. As a seasoned restorative justice practitioner, community organizer and educator, she has spoken at TEDxLAU at the Lebanese American University of Beirut, has taught ethnic studies classes and at a variety of colleges, speaks and performs at conferences, worked in schools holding multiple roles such as counselor, RJ coordinator and teacher, and offers regular trainings and consultations on restorative justice, relational-culture transformation and community building.
Naima discovered a passion for creating handcrafted jewelry during quarantining in 2020 and launched naima grace at the beginning of 2021.
Find out more about naima grace, Naima's hand-crafted jewelry line HERE.
EPK available upon request - please contact me