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Zara McFarlane

Songs of an Unknown Tongue



Released: 17th Jul 2020



Released: 17th Jul 2020


Brownswood are delighted to present Zara McFarlane’s, Songs of an Unknown Tongue a masterful work that underlines her continuous growth as an artist.

Zara’s fourth studio album pushes the boundaries of jazz adjacent music via an exploration into the folk and spiritual traditions of her ancestral motherland, Jamaica. The album is a rumination on the piecing together of black heritage, where painful and proud histories are uncovered and connected to the present. Partnering with cult South London based producers Kwake Bass and Wu-lu, Zara has created a futuristic sound palate, electronically recreating the pulsing, hypnotic rhythms Kumina and Nyabinghi – and the music played at African rooted rituals like the emancipation celebration Bruckins Party, and the lively death rites of Dinki Minki and Gerreh. These richly patterned electronic rhythms are balanced throughout by McFarlane’s distinctive, clear vocal tones, and vivid song writing. Zara’s critically acclaimed third studio album ‘Arise’ met with universal critical praise, and was supported by an impressive live tour performing at festivals such as Love Supreme, Field Day and SXSW. Zara is the winner of multiple awards including a Mobo, 2 Jazz FM Vocalist of the Year Award (2018 & 2015), an Urban Music Award, and Session of the Year at Worldwide Awards. Drawing respect from a wide range of artists, Zara has collaborated with Gregory Porter, Shabaka Hutchings, Moses Boyd and Louie Vega. These new sonic explorations signal an exciting direction of travel for this innovative founding member of the UK’s vibrant homegrown jazz scene. ***please note that the vinyl version has different edits and tracks in a different order ***

Songs of an Unknown Tongue


  1. Everything Is Connected
  2. Black Treasure (vinyl contaions different edit)
  3. My Story (vinyl contaions different edit)
  4. Broken Water (vinyl contaions different edit)
  5. Saltwater (vinyl contaions different edit)
  6. Run Of Your Life (vinyl contaions different edit)
  7. State Of Mind (vinyl contaions different edit)
  8. Native Nomad (vinyl contaions different edit)
  9. Roots Of Freedom
  10. Future Echoes