revisiting cherrie hersi's 'tabanja'

September 14, 2017

Scandinavia has always been considered the happiest place on earth, but Cherrie Hersi begs to differ. 

words by: Bere Wangge

As the Somalia-born, Finland-raised and Sweden-based Cherrie Hersi revealed that she'll be returning with new music, we take a look back at her single "Tabanja" and its powerful visual.

Although it was released in 2015, "Tabanja" feels more relevant than ever now. Shot in the Rinkeby neighborhood of Stockholm (where she resides), the black-and-white video shows no sign of that  Scandinavia-style happiness we hear so much about. Instead, it displays children with a forlorn look on their faces, graffiti stating "You ain't local," dark liquid that looks a lot like blood dripping down the street and more somber and sobering images.

Swedish slang for gun, "Tabanja," according to the singer's representative, "shows a suffocating truth of a world caught in a downward spiral." Coupled with Hersi's haunting voice, the song and the video become a representation of the world today and likely the daily reality the singer faces as someone considered "ain't local." With politically-charged message and bass-heavy production, "Tabanja" is nothing and everything you would expect from what is essentially a dance-ready number. 

Watch the video above and keep up with Hersi by following her on Instagram and Twitter

And check out Ifeanyi Awachie's review of more artists from the Swedish R&B genre.


Header image c/o @Chxrrie