Amaal Takes Flight With “Not What I Thought”

For Somali-Canadian singer Amaal, music has been an outlet like no other. Her family fled war-torn Somalia for Canadia, where she was brought up in a strict household. The middle child with seven sisters and two brothers, she has fought to find her identity — but now, she’s flourishing.

Her EP, Black Dove, has been about expressing who she is — and the parts of her that she had previously tried to hide.

“I just started talking about things that I had gone through in relationships, staying in a relationship longer when I should’ve left and the whole concept of struggle love,” she explains. “Just the black community, my community… I feel like we, as women, sometimes we feel like we have to endure pain in order to show that we love someone. From the outside looking in, people didn’t assume that about me, but that is kind of what I was. I grew so much from that and I wanted to share that in my music. Black Dove to me represents freedom. I love birds, I love doves, I think they’re so empowering and free and I’m a black woman, so it was like black dove.”

In this stripped-back version of “Not What I Thought”, she shows off just what she’s about:



She’s a strong young artist with a clear voice — and she’s not afraid to use it. Expect to hear a lot more from Amaal.