Shahzoda

Shahzoda (Шахзода; real name Zilola Bahodirovna Musayeva, as it is spelled in Uzbek) is an Uzbek singer and actress.

Shahzoda grew up in Fergana, in the Uzbek SSR. She was interested in music from her childhood, but has no musical education—she studied management at the International State University of Kyiv, but left the university to start her music career. She joined the duet Jonim (meaning “soul” in Uzbek), with the singer Aziza, and started her solo career a few years later, in 2001. She quickly became successful in Central Asia—her audiences overflowed concert halls in Tashkent. Her first album, Bor Ekan (There), appeared in 2002, with the single of the same name becoming quite popular in Uzbekistan.

Since then she has continued her solo career and also collaborated with other musicians from around the world, including the Russian DJ Smash, the Romanian group Aksent, and the French DJ Sean Bay. Her work with DJ Smash went to #5 in Russia. She is considered to be the first Uzbek singer to work with international artists, though her main success has been in Central Asia and the Caucasus. Most of Shahzoda’s songs are in Uzbek, but she has also recorded some in Tajik, English, and Russian, among other languages.

She has won a number of awards for her music, most notably “Most Popular Central Asian and Caucasian Artist” at the Big Apple Music Awards in New York in 2011. Her 2009 album Sevgi Bor (Love) was named one of the top albums in Asia. In addition, she was supposed to represent Uzbekistan in the inaugural Türkvizyon Song Contest in 2013 with her song “Slowly” (“Медленно,” sung in Russian), but at the last minute was dropped in favor of Nilufar Usmonova. She has also acted in a number of films in Uzbekistan.

 

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“Slowly” (“Медленно”), one of her Russian-language songs:

 

Lyrics for “Slowly”:

Прохладный ветер обнимает меня
Сердце на ноте твоего дыхания
И как бы не было серым небо
Пока по капелькам любви мы следом
На тишине,наедине,затаив дыхание

Медленно,медленно губы касаются
Губы касаются губ,губы касаются
Медленно,медленно мир поменяется
Этим слиянием судеб
Медленно,медленно губы касаются
Губы касаются губ,губы касаются
Медленно,медленно мир поменяется
Этим слиянием судеб

Прикосновение манит меня
Это движение моего желания
И как бы не было серым небо
Пока по капелькам любви мы следом
На тишине,наедине,затаив дыхание

Медленно,медленно губы касаются
Губы касаются губ,губы касаются
Медленно,медленно мир поменяется
Этим слиянием судеб
Медленно,медленно губы касаются
Губы касаются губ,губы касаются
Медленно,медленно мир поменяется
Этим слиянием судеб

 

“Shunchaki” (“Just”), a popular song sung in Uzbek from 2014:

 

Lyrics for “Shunchaki”:

Нола қилур нола,
Ишқ уйида қизбола
Яна юрак бағри пора,
Иш куйида дил пора.

Нола қилур нола,
Иш уйида қизбола.
Севгидан юрак пора,
Алдангандек у зора.

Ёлғон севгига алданма,
Мени сева деб хўрламна,
Наҳот шу бўлса севги деб ойланма

Чин севги бу бошқача,
туйғулари ўзгача
Чин севги йўқ
17- ёшгача.

Шунчаки, севги ўзи дард
Шунчаки, севги у бефарқ
Гохи алам, гохи қайғу
Гохи шириндур, гохи оғу
Шунчаки, севги ўзи дард

Гоҳ куйса у гоҳ ёнса,
Дил соғинип уйғонса
Яна бор умидлар сонса
Севгидан конгил қолса…

Гоҳ куйса у гоҳ ёнса,
Бир қайғулар уйғонса.
Орзудан юрак тонса
Нахот армон шу бўлса

Ёлғон севгига алданма,
Мени сева деб хўрламна,
Чин севги йўқ
17- ёшгача

Шунчаки, севги ўзи дард
Шунчаки, севги у бефарқ
Гохи алам, гохи қайғу
Гохи шириндур, гохи оғу
Шунчаки, севги ўзи дард

 

Find Shahzoda on Amazon

Julie is currently studying Russian as a Second Language in Irkutsk (and before that, Bishkek) with SRAS's Home and Abroad Scholarship program, with the goal of someday having some sort of Russia/Eurasia-related career. She recently got her master’s degree from the University of Glasgow and the University of Tartu, where she studied women’s dissent in Soviet Russia. She also has a bachelor’s degree in literature from Yale. Some of her favorite Russian authors are Sorokin, Shishkin, Il’f and Petrov, and Akhmatova. In her spare time Julie cautiously practices martial arts, reads feminist websites, and taste-tests instant coffee for her blog.