Tasleem One Sheet
Tasleem Jamila, a native of Chicago is an interdisciplinary artist, performer, poet, curator, program director, host, journalist, fashion designer, actor, playwright, and educator, whose body of work focuses on social action and community love and revitalization. Her sound is a fusion of hip hop, spirituals, mystical chants, and lyrical soul. With performances that include The Kennedy Center, Excel London, Columbia University (NYC) and the African World Festival of the Arts. She has performed her works across the US as well as the UK, Africa, and Canada and continues to tour worldwide. Her latest work is the play "Portals Open" written and directed by Tasleem which premiered at the Chicago Hip-Hip Theater Festival in 2019. She is currently touring Portals Open with an educational curriculum and exhibit to accompany. Tasleem recently published a book of poetry, Black Baptist Muslim Mystic which is receiving critical acclaim in addition to her album “Tasleem” and live and unplugged DVD “My Soul Speaks”. She is sought after for her captivating energy as a host, professional skills as a cultural producer and educating activist as a workshop facilitator.
Tasleem is pushing the boundaries with her new book of poetry, Black Baptist Muslim Mystic: From the Cosmos which is also a multi-media show, art exhibit with an original musical composition (Reginald Robinson) to tour. She won a fellowship traveling to London, England to perform and participate as a performance artist at events with Prince Charles, Mayor Boris Johnson of London and many Prime Ministers. Tasleem Jamila is also a featured artist for her poem, “I AM” from her book Black Baptist Muslim Mystic: From the Cosmos with the International Women’s Museum breaking down stereotypes of women.
Tasleem is a chosen member of the artist roster for 2018 Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN). She has also served on a number of boards over the years including the Black Arts Cultural Center in West Michigan and Sisters Helping Sisters, Chicago.
She has shared the stage with such artists as The Last Poets, Rakim, Yuna, KRS-1, Vieux Farka Toure, Brother Ali, Tinariwen, Tiraline, Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Lupe Fiasco, Rock Steady Crew, Kindred and the Family Soul, Jurassic 5 among others.
As an activist poet, Tasleem has written and performed special poetry for The Cancer Society of Chicago, Domestic Violence Programs, Peace in Streets Campaign and Youth Peace Summit.
Along with her training in voice, Tasleem has studied, sang and played guitar in a group with the legendary Master Kelan Phil Cohran (Sun-Ra) “Music and the Cosmos” and studied composition with Reginald R. Robinson (MacArthur Genius), mentored by producer/composer Kerwin Young (Public Enemy, Angie Stone, Rakim) and Khari Lemuel. She also attended Columbia College Chicago where she studied theater and fashion design, is a Certified Reiki Therapist, Bachelors in Complementary and Alternative Health and is completing a Masters in Spirituality, Culture & Health at Western Michigan University.
Tasleem Jamila’s talents reach beyond poetry, music, production, and design, she also has her hand in acting. She has appeared in a documentary film about domestic violence which was showcased at The New York Cultural Museum. Tasleem has also appeared in the following movies: “Love Jones”, “A Hip-Hop Journey with the Ancestors”, (a film about Oscar Brown Jr,), and a cameo in the film “New Muslim Cool”.
As a cultural producer, Tasleem utilizes her skills working with the youth conducting workshops on self-esteem, Hip-Hop and Poetry/Spoken Word and more. She is the creative mind behind many festivals, events, and productions. Tasleem has acted as Head Coordinator, Stage Manager and Host for IMAN (Inner-city Muslim Action Network) Taking It to the Streets World Festival from 2005-2016. As a writer, director and choreographer for productions, her youth advocacy has allowed her to work with organizations such as Kuumba Lynx, Little Black Pearl, Family Matters, After School Matters and Cease Fire as well. She has also hosted, organized and faciliated many holistic spiritual artist retreats over the past 10 years.
Tasleem is a journalist and was a radio host and co-producer of a weekly radio program Sunday Edition of Radio Islam which aired on WCEV, Chicago radio (radioislam.com) where she interviewed hundreds of guest from all over the world for ten years. Of the most notable icons, she has interviewed: First Lady Michelle Obama, Imam Warith Deen Mohammed, and Public Enemy.
She has been featured in the Chicago Tribune, Muslim Journal, Chicago Daily, and on BBC, NPR, WKKC (Chicago), ABC-Channel 7 (Chicago) and many media outlets and stations across the world.
She has also toured extensively and made numerous appearances on other artist’s albums and pages, including Kuumba Lynx “El Barrio Clocks Our Beats and Rhymes” album, Sound Mindz Music “The Attack of the Waybacks” album, Vent Movements “Let the Movement Began” album, Floyd Boykin Jr, “No More Silent Cries” anthology book and “Crossing Limits” which brings Muslim American and Jewish American Poets together.
In 2009 she was asked to join a group of artist from around the world for a compilation CD dedicated to the legacy of Malcolm X “Necessary” to be released with three unpublished chapters of “The Autobiography of Malcolm X”.
A full documentary about her life as an artist by Lunar Butterfly Productions can be seen on her website. She is also currently on tour promoting her book, BLACK BAPTIST MUSLIM MYSTIC: From the Cosmos. Tasleem also continues to study as a Holistic Health Consultant.
As she grows so does her art.