FAULT Favourite Marie Naffah, MTV’s Unsigned Artist for 2014 and a star of FAULT 18 (The RAW Issue), has returned with a special project.
In a not-for-profit project to raise awareness and understanding of the issues surrounding visual impairment and sight loss, Marie has teamed up with a group of six blind and visually-impaired musicians to record and release for free her song ‘Blindfold’: as a documentary-style video exploring the disability and the importance of music to those who suffer from it.
The song itself was written by Marie, who is 22, as a response to her grandmother’s experience with blindness and the implications it had had on her life and the lives around her. Having performed the song to senior BBC broadcast journalist Tony Shearman, who is also blind, Marie was invited to play and be interviewed on Insight Radio – the official radio station of the Royal National Institute of Blindness (RNIB).
Steve Plowman, a blind drummer living just outside of London, heard Marie on Insight Radio and impressed by the poignancy of the lyrics, as well as the tuneful song itself, he asked Marie whether there would be an opportunity for him to perform it with her.
With help from the RNIB, five more blind and partially sighted musicians expressed interest in the project, and so it was decided that a documentary/recording of the track would be made: to emphasise the importance of music in the lives of visually-impaired people and to show how, contrary to public opinion, a disability such as blindness does not automatically prevent a person from being able to perform music.
The 12 minute documentary, made by filmmaker Constance Meath Baker, consists of a series of interviews with the musicians followed by the track itself, recorded at a studio in High Wycombe with help from producer David Lane.