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Author: Arman Naféei

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Arman Naféei’s weekly interview series exploring the soundtrack of today's cultural figures and personalities in the fields of Music, Film, Art, Fashion and Lifestyle.
53 Episodes
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Ep 52 // ORION CARLOTO

Ep 52 // ORION CARLOTO

2021-07-0201:02:41

This week, ORION CARLOTO and Arman explore the intrinsic linkage between poetry and all art forms. It’s not every 24 year old who quotes the French poet Arthur Rimbaud so casually; Carloto brings energy and feeling to a medium which is vital to the arts and soul of the world. Describing the beautifully fresh and devastating songs of Leonard Cohen, to her affinity for Fiona Apple’s ability to unapologetically sing her truths, Vanessa’s references form a foundation for her craft and her life. ETHEREAL by nature, Orion glimmers light and insight, exquisitely shining out into her orbit. 
Ep 51 // ELIM CHAN

Ep 51 // ELIM CHAN

2021-06-2501:07:27

Creating a sound that is 3D is ELIM CHAN's magic touch. She and Arman dive deeply into this enchantment, delving into Disney's Fantasia’s role in planting the seeds of her dreams to manifest imagery, feeling and motion with music. As the youngest chief conductor of the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra, she materializes this gift by transmitting her magic to hundreds of thousands and more audiences. Describing the feeling of hot butter gliding down her arms as she conducts Rachmaninoff’s sexy Symphony No. 2, Chan is captivating, humble and a crescendo of joy. Her ultimate gig? To be the first conductor on mars. We’re betting it all on Chan. Her dreams are big and her execution laser sharp - a natural trailblazer and magician, exuding imagination from every pore. Quoting Roald Dahl, “Those who don’t believe in magic will never see it,” her channels are open for what’s to come. Listen for immediate inspiration and a beautiful dream.
Ep 50 // KALI UCHIS

Ep 50 // KALI UCHIS

2021-06-1845:41

Whether she's singing, songwriting, directing, painting or producing, KALI UCHIS is an unmatched tour de force. Dialing from Los Angeles, KALI shows us why she is revered as one the most interesting artists of today. Multi-hyphenate by design, KALI delves on the importance she places on artistic integrity over virality, how Colombian culture informs her own artistic repertoire and how she's helping champion the broad array of subgenres of Latin music by bringing those sounds to the forefront. Independence and artistic integrity are at the core of KALI's artistic output. A bravado characterises KALI's stand in the world: SIN MIEDO, her recently released studio album, is a statement on how a predominantly Spanish album can be both a commercial and critical success.
Ep 49 // BENJI B

Ep 49 // BENJI B

2021-06-1101:22:00

BENJI B sees the glass half full. His enthusiasm for the massive energy release and experimentation that will emerge from the pandemic is more than just blind optimism; it’s faith in the fact that over the course of his career, he notes change as the essential precursor to the greatest creative moments and movements. Seeing music as the outpouring of new groups/scenes of people evolving together, B describes what it’s like to live in the pulse of the music of the moment, panning for the gold of today, while regularly stopping to pinch himself in the realization that he has the best job in the world. Following a compass built on old records that moved the dial, B shares a few touch points from his life of exploring sounds. Walking around with a brain full of music is B’s reality - the moodboard from his mind emerging like the labyrinth of a spider web with the texture of an orchestra.
EP 48 // JULIE MEHRETU

EP 48 // JULIE MEHRETU

2021-06-0401:11:35

Just after hanging her latest exhibition at the Whitney, JULIE MEHRETU dials Arman from home. Growing up a child of the early 70's during the height of the Pan-African post colonial movement, Mehretu shares a lifetime of music and stories as perceptive as her art. Painting a parallel between the ability jazz has to structurally shift music into a plane of abstraction, Mehretu's insightful ear is as fine tuned as they come. From Mavis Staples' sexy voice, Steve McQueen's brilliant filmmaking, and the feeling of real liberation Lil Nas X's video Montero inspires, the soundtrack to MEHRETU's life evokes a new type of aesthetic. Digging into her own archeology, she describes hiding Prince pins under her lapel as a kid, living in New York City during the peak of the 90's hip hop scene, and what it's like for her to approach a blank canvas. To get into a particular mood, Julie puts early hip hop or a Sun Ra album on the turntable. Listen now to get into the mood of all of the above!
Ep 47 // DAVID BYRNE

Ep 47 // DAVID BYRNE

2021-05-2801:09:15

It’s no surprise that DAVID BYRNE enters the Zoom with a startling, silvery magnetism. With a mind as sharp as an encyclopedia but as free as the wind, BYRNE delves into the music and poetry that inspired him to re-imagine the Top 40, launching his iconoclastic career. As original as thinkers come, jumping into Byrne’s world pushes boundaries, questions structures, and does it all with BYRNIAN flare: perfectly synchronous with eclectically mesmerizing style. Amongst his inexhaustible influences and inspirations, he describes Gamelan music, the airy harmonies of Peter, Paul & Mary, and how the sensuous melodies and rhythms of Brazilian music move him with emotion. Don’t miss the chance to visit Byrne’s world, dance to his drum, you’ve found the place! 
Ep 46 // GOLSHIFTEH FARAHANI

Ep 46 // GOLSHIFTEH FARAHANI

2021-05-2201:36:4828

GOLSHIFTEH FARAHANI is not quick to fill the silence, but she can't help but fill her surroundings with light. Leaving a space open for divine interference, she sits with Arman in her living room. FARAHANI takes a closer look into the cultures, diaspora, languages, and frequencies that course through her, tuning her life. Forging a connection between her innate drive to create and Iran's culture in which art is as essential as breathing oxygen, Farahani describes her life as a bridge between West and East. Quoting the great Rumi: “The reason a bamboo becomes a flute is because it’s empty,” listeners can feel the divine melody that fills FARAHANI’S being, emitting light through a darker time for humanity. Beyond profundity, perhaps, is the very idea of silence as truth. To slip into a new persona, Farahani speaks of channeling the quieter realms of existing in which no words, noises, or even attempts of expression can match the very essence of BEING. Being, beautifully, as Farahani embodies, comes with the acceptance of death, silence, the spaces between. Diving into those spaces, it’s clear that any room she walks into takes on a higher frequency before - Farahani is electric, alluring, and very much herself. Describing everything from music being a medium of memories, the beauty of 'nothingness', Prince and MJ's ability to channel melodies from above, Farahani's words flow like poetry. Listen and you'll learn, love and be lifted up.
SVEN MARQUARDT exudes stoic creativity, describing Berghain as a 'place of diversity, freedom, and anarchy,' SVEN delves into the historical context of Berlin's notorious club scene alongside his lifelong passion for photography. Having grown up within the GDR, SVEN delves into the deep inspirations that drive him: from hearing Freddie Mercury's voice for the first time to the static beauty of silence on one of his shoots. Impossible to mistake the iconoclastic power of Berlin nightlife as THE countercultural institution of the past two decades, he reiterates the importance of spaces where true expression can thrive into the crack of dawn. Aside from his infamy as being the world's most recognizable Bouncer, MARQUARDT's love of music, film, and fashion are integral to understanding the full spectrum of his personality, combined with a refined taste of all the latter you won't want to miss.
Multi-talented filmmaker and actress MAISIE WILLIAMS wears many hats. In her latest, she channels Jordan Mooney, a role not for the faint of heart. Effervescent and insightful, MAISIE describes diving into the punk queen’s character, immersing herself into an art movement edging towards liberation. If anyone can rise to the brightest limelight and remain as perceptive and grounded as can be, it’s MAISIE. Tune in and listen to she and Arman discuss the music that shapes her life, draws her into the delicate mental realms of acting, echoing like an extension of her own brain.
TREMAINE EMORY makes every word count. Bringing to life the joys of ‘getting in your feelings’ to some Miles Davis at 2AM with a burger at Bistro NYC, ARMAN and EMORY's shared love of local NYC haunts, dancing to James Brown, Michael Jackson, & Prince will pull you right in. A true polymath at heart, EMORY’S use of iconography to raise social awareness of systematic racism is just one thread of his extraordinary ability to tap into the positive aspects of the wild world of Instagram and the Internet. Not without awareness of the digital world’s downsides, EMORY mentions that he sees the internet as ‘the largest double edged sword in the history of humanity.’ Alongside anecdotes on love, obliterating the boundaries of genre, Frank Ocean’s impeccable writing style, and describing the sound of his alter ego: DENIM TEARS, EMORY shares music that shaped him. As 1/3 of the enigmatic trio, No Vacancy Inn, Emory recalls one of their many infamous gigs through his earnest yet deliberate artistry of storytelling. Reminding listeners that the three most important things for creativity are interconnected: "self-confidence, self love, and not seeking validation from outside things,” Emory signs off with his undeniable and understated cool.
No time is wasted in this episode. MAGNETIC Marina Abramović describes the act of reminiscing on the past as comparable to “reading old newspaper.” Nonetheless, Abramović brings new color to sharing a few moments in which music shaped her life.  Recalling being brought to tears at the age of 14 by the sound of Maria Callas’ voice pouring out of her grandmother’s Bakelite radio, Abramović nearly implodes with passion while expressing the source of her inspiration to breathe new life into opera. From Chavela Vargas' powerhouse vocals in the middle of Paloma Negra, to Juliette Greco’s raspy conviction, Abramović reveals a tapestry of strong willed women inspire her work. Emphasizing her vulnerability as a force both equal and opposite to stubbornness, she describes a dynamic integral to both her work and way of life. Following steadfast in her belief that “people react only when they see real emotion, not fake,” love and courage are a common thread though her personality, work, and music tastes. Opening her heart to the public is no magic spell casting for fame - it’s her completely genuine way of giving out what the world needs most. Envisioning the future of art as nothing other than a pure transmission of energy between viewer and artist, Abramović radiates brilliance, self-possession, and comes across as a living example of why we should all live life with the courage to continue falling in love again, and again. There are no limitations, no barriers, and no ‘no’’s in her way. Switching off her mic, she says goodbye to Arman, and goes back to work.
EP 41 // DAVID LACHAPELLE

EP 41 // DAVID LACHAPELLE

2021-04-1601:59:54

DAVID LACHAPELLE'S unmistakable charisma transports us to sunny Los Angeles. LACHAPELLE takes Arman on a crash course through his experiences of regularly attending Studio54 at the age of 14, fueling his spirit through dancing, faith in himself, love, and God. DAVID discusses Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, recounting the first time he met Tupac Shakur, also revealing the Life Lessons learned from his friend Andy Warhol. Much like one of his photographs, in this episode, every detail counts. Describing the feeling of stepping out onto the New York City streets with your clothing freezing to your body after sweating the night away with Ru Paul at The Pyramid. Listeners: lean in, get ready to be moved.
Ep 40 // DUA LIPA

Ep 40 // DUA LIPA

2021-04-0936:052

Radical Optimism kicks off SEASON 2 with none other than THEE Pop Star giving Disco life, DUA LIPA. Over Zoom, Arman dials Dua — sitting at the Chateau with a green juice in hand — the two have a laugh, talk about music's transcendent power to break language barriers, and what it was like to call her upon her idols and create the anthems of Future Nostalgia soundtracking our states of self-isolation WHILE topping the Billboard Charts and becoming the most streamed album in history. If 2020 has taught us anything, it's that it takes strength to be optimistic and fully present: Dua's Future Nostalgia serves as a testament to our collective need for more positivity — through the lens of an intergenerational dance party, of course.
Ep 39 // WOLFGANG TILLMANS

Ep 39 // WOLFGANG TILLMANS

2020-12-1801:16:36

WOLFGANG TILLMANS and ARMAN NAFÉEI sit down in his studio in Berlin - full of plants, printers, photographs and warmth. This journey through TILLMANS’ mind is one to enjoy - taking us from his first purchase of a $20 flash gun camera, to playing an unreleased track live on the show, and discussing the COVID vs HIV crisis, and shared yearning for the return of nightlife and human connection. TILLMANS is as prolific, perceptive and evolved as ever.
Ep 38 // RICHIE HAWTIN

Ep 38 // RICHIE HAWTIN

2020-12-1101:30:36

Almost exactly a year since his set at the Hollywood Palladium, we’ve tapped-in with the illustrious techno powerhouse RICHIE HAWTIN for a candid fireside chat on everything—from COVID's effects on the live music industry, to the lasting impact of the "Motor City" on his life and career. In this interview, HAWTIN situates his own work between the hypnotism of acid tracks and the futurism felt within Detroit Techno, noting the love of the 303’s raw simplicity and finding the similar feeling within a track by The Rah Band in his youth. Bonus: Can you guess his second-ever concert experience? Well, it’s none other than the late, great Prince.
With Colette at 20 and three years since it closed the boutique’s influence over the aesthetics of thee retail shopping experience remains unparalleled. Once noted as Karl Lagerfeld’s only go-to Parisian shoppe, the successful formula predates the contemporary “brand-activation,” simply based on the deeply personal connection with just about every “product” in-store. In this episode, SARAH ANDELMAN talks about her own musical history—forever reflected within Colette’s iconic compilations—plus her most recent obsession with Khruangbin and Olympic films on Criterion. Creative Directors: take note!
Ep 36 // THE KILLS

Ep 36 // THE KILLS

2020-11-2735:37

After being active almost two decades, THE KILLS’ catalogue remains rightfully cemented within our rock ’n’ roll memory In this episode, VV and HOTEL are on the eve of releasing Little Bastards, a collection of B-Sides and Rarities, so it’s only right that we discuss the records that influenced their blissfully hypnotic sound. From the allure of Punk and skateboarding culture to The Neptunes “brutal” drum machines on Clipse’s Hell Hath No Fury, the duo talk about the legacy of Gary’s Bar and Trash in London, the fresh feeling of gigging across America, and embracing the limitations of your equipment.
Ep 35 // BRADLEY ZERO

Ep 35 // BRADLEY ZERO

2020-11-2039:59

The dance floor has always been the site for raw, unfiltered expression, which, in the current moment, takes on an immeasurable significance, leaving us yearning for togetherness. In this episode, Rhythm Section founder BRADLEY ZERO talks about London’s cultural explosion throughout the past two decades: from his own presence as a radio host/promoter/label owner, to working with Boiler Room when the platform was still too young to be defined. In pondering the future of nightlife, ZERO shares with us his affection for Leeds’ Carnival and Leeds’ Festival, one notably much angstier than the other.
The legendary Irish singer, songwriter and powerful performer ROÍSÍN MURPHY emphasizes the importance of revisiting the past to inform the future. In this episode, we catch the wonderful and delightful Disco Queen and talked about our shared passion for Italian Cinéma and music from Lucio Battisti and Mina to her latest record Roísín Machine and of course, Moloko.
Ep 33 // JANE BIRKIN

Ep 33 // JANE BIRKIN

2020-10-3001:04:48

What words can even come close enough to capture the essence and magnetism of JANE BIRKIN? A timeless muse, canonical chanteuse, whose profound influence on culture within (and beyond) the 20th century remains unparalleled. In this episode, BIRKIN shares with us insight throughout her legacy: from memories of dancing to Elvis’ Blue Suede Shoes with her siblings, to acknowledging the unfading infatuation of her relationship with Serge Gainsbourg. Minimal words, maximum sentiment: simply put, enjoy.
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Comments (5)

Asma Asgharii

❤❤❤❤

Jul 6th
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Mehrdad Ranji

proud of you Goli , we enjoyed it . thanks and best wishes for both of you 💙

Jun 17th
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Mahshid Dodel

❤❤❤

May 27th
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Fatemeh Naderi

What beautiful words your said 😍

May 23rd
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Melika Nejati

OMG🥺

May 23rd
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