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The pursuit of one's identity with Bob Juburi

Today we meet Ibraheem Juburi, also known as Bob Juburi. A composer, sound designer and guitarist that, in 2020, was named one of Music Business Worldwide’s ‘5 Hottest Independent Artists in the World’.

When we asked about his upbringing and his musical roots we were impressed by the diversity his earlier days presented. “I was born in London but moved a lot before settling in Madrid at 16” he says "by that point I was quite an experienced gigger: I’d played lead guitar in metal bands in the Dubai scene since I was 14 and some of the gigs got pretty big so I thought I was the shit! It was all about crowd-diving and playing solos on your knees in those days but the feedback I got built up my confidence and cemented in me a dream to be a professional musician and performer.”

“My favorite part of being a musician is scoring for film. I love solving problems and, scoring for film, is essentially a series of multiple choice music problems”

Just like his life, his musical style has also been through some changes. He’s experimented with Metal, Rock, Blues, Singer-Songwriter, Hip Hop, and electronic. 13 years later, he’s found a new genre that he enjoys playing with “I like to make jazz-infused electronic music, but really I’m just experimenting and seeing how I can express myself and be kind of unique, if possible”

And, in a moment of deep honesty, he opened up about his biggest problem during his pursuit in a career in music. “My biggest problem has been the pursuit of an identity. Particularly when I was starting out in production, I had so many influences and types of music that I wanted to make that I struggled to view or market myself in a consistent way. I couldn’t even decide what I wanted to make. I’m not sure I’ve ‘overcome’ it yet, but I’m definitely improving. At the end of the day, I appreciate having picked up so much from different musical worlds over the years and wouldn’t trade it for anything… except maybe for the ability to play sax.”

We asked Bob about his latest release, “Game 5!”, and this is what he had to say “it’s the first single from a larger project! The concept behind the song was to integrate uptempo 30s swing music with some electronic madness. It didn’t end up sounding anything like swing but it did end up being my favourite release! I love working with Monkeybars (sax), he’s the best.”

“My goals are in flux but one constant has been that I want to release a full-length jazztronica album that has both emotional appeal and that pushes the envelope in terms of execution and expectations”

But, unlike what one may believe, not everything has been about music in his life (at least for a brief moment in time) “I studied philosophy at uni with the intention of getting into politics but ended up working as a political journalist... I missed music too much, though, and abandoned that ship quite quickly haha”.

The road to discovering web3 (and it’s integration with music) is always very unique to the individual. And, we were curious to see what was that pushed him to this world. “My friend and I started the pop label Basto Records a few years ago. Throughout that journey we were constantly brainstorming about how we could integrate blockchain technology into our business. We started becoming privy to the latest in Music/web3 developments and found ourselves transitioning into that space more permanently. These ambitions led us to founding the NFT art project Quest of Evolution (currently in its seed round), which has an important musical feature but is actually primarily a literary experiment”

Before finishing this interview, we had to ask Bob what was the best advice he’s ever been given. And, what advice he’d give to someone else. Of course, we weren’t disappointed by the answers…

“The best advice I’ve been given is to avoid 360 record deals!” He says cheekily. “I’m not sure if I’m in a place to give any advice yet, but I would definitely say to my younger self: be open minded! Metalheads can be so arrogant.”


If you’d like to keep up with Bob and listen to his future (and first) label release (and other original songs) keep an eye on his social media!

Instagram | Spotify

You can also find his project Quest of Evolution on Twitter or Website