Ayola A Constructed Language Linking the Global Community
Muslim Hindu Rock Bands


Muslim Hindu Punk Rock Bands are Part of a New Movement


In Wayland, Massachusetts, members of a band called The Kominas are helping a small but growing music movement in America: South Asian and Middle Eastern punk rock. The Kominas are drawing attention from Muslim and Hindu immigrants as well as disdain from traditional Muslims, who claim the music is forbidden. The movement is a subculture stemming from conservative origins. “There are a lot of contradictions going on here,” says one member. Some band members’ musical background includes classical violin and traditional Punjab music. The members say their music allows them to deal with issues like American life, women’s rights, and the conflict between East versus West. “This is one way to deal with my identity as an Arab-American,” says the guitarist from another Muslim punk rock band, Al-Thawra.


The Middle Eastern punk rock movement is accredited to Michael Muhammad Knight and his novel ‘The Taqwacore.’ The title comes from the English word ‘hardcore’ and the Arabic word ‘Taqwa’, meaning piety or God-fearing. The book dreamed of Muslim punk rockers, and soon after its release, South Asian and Middle Eastern punk rock bands emerged. When Basim Usmani and Shahjehan Khan discovered the book, they were already forming The Kominas, which means ‘scoundrels’, and following the book’s dream. They contacted Knight, and in 2007 he helped them embark on a Muslim punk rock tour. At one venue, The Kominas upset many traditional Muslims, who thought the music was “un-Islamic” and were outraged that a woman was singing onstage. The incident is depicted in an upcoming documentary called ‘Taqwacore: The Birth of Punk Islam’.


There are other bands that are part of Taqwacore, and the music style can vary a little. The Kominas’ style mixes punk, ska, and funk. Al-Thawra, a band from Chicago, sings about more political topics with a more heavy metal sound. Other known bands are Sarmust from WashingtonD.C. and Vote Hezbollah from Texas. All the bands record and sell their own albums, and many of the members have full-time jobs. In addition to a Muslim and Hindu immigrant following, the groups have recognized Latino punks following their music. A Boston anthropologist says that the identity message behind the music will connect with immigrant populations, and the movement is “a good opportunity for stereotype-smashing”.


The Kominas, in an attempt to break their stereotype, will sing songs in Hindi on their next album, instead of only in English. Some of the members admit that they are not necessarily religious, despite their families’ wishes. Though the bands do face some discrimination because of their open attitude, they still focus on their music.



Ayola Translation

Muslimihindua Punkrokay Bandoy Estats Parto Je Nuva Muvmento

Translation by Desiree Ficarra


Enu Weyland, Masatcusets [1] membroy je bando nameda jwi La Kominoy [2] nahelpats parva coe kreska muzikay muvmento jenu Amérika [3]: sudasiay ce mezdogay punka roko [4]. La Kominoy naatrakconats atentajo ji muslima ce hindua imigroy, coe dezdenajo ji naktradiciona muslimoy [5], kyo dicats ke la muziko geprohibats. La muvmento estats subkulturo jdelu konservativa originyisoy [6]. “Dze naokazats multa kontradiktajoy hire”, dicats una membro. La muzikay tawsto je sama membroy inkludats klasica violino ce naktradiciona pundjabay muziko. La membroy dicats ke dyayza muziko permitats ke dyay kolpats swaloy kyasu lo vivajo [7] jenu Amérika, lo rayto ja femoy, ce la konfligajo [8] ji Dogon cwe Veston. “Tiso estats una medio [9] cfuru kolpare myoza identitato, kyo estats araba amerikano”, dicats la gitaristo je otra muslima punkrokay bando nameda jwi Al Tawra.


La mezdogay punkrokay muvmento geakreditats aru Maykel Muhamad Nayt ce dyaza romanzo ‘The Taqwacore’ (‘La Takwakor’). La titlo originyats [10] delu la inglesay vorto ‘hardcore’ (‘hardkor’) ce la arabesay vorto ‘taqwa’ (‘takwa’), kyo betudats ‘piusetso’ cay ‘bogway venerajo’. La libro dremits vonu muslima punkrokistoy, ce balde postu dwaza gevipucajo [11], sudasiay ce mezdogay punkrokay bandoy emergits. Anke Basim Usmani ce Cadjehan Kan dekuvrits la libro, dyay deje naformazits [12] La Kominoy, kyo betudats ‘skurkoy’, ce nafolgits la gedremo [13] ji la libro. Dyay kontatits Nayt ce anu 2007 dya helpits dyay alu [14] embarkare furu muslimay punkrokay turajo. Enu una venuo, La Kominoy ofendits multa naktradiciona muslimoy, kyo pensits ke la muziko estits nonnakislama [15] ce geindignits ke femo nacantits enpalke. La incidento geskildrats enu futura dokumentario nameda jwi ‘Taqwacore: The Birth of Punk Islam’ (‘Takwakor: La Naskyajo ji Punka Islamo’).


Dze estats otra bandoy kyo estats parto je Tákwakor, ce la muzikay stilo povats varyare [16] poke. La stilo je La Kominoy mikswats [17] punka roko, skaho cwe funko. Al Tawra, kyo estats bando jdelu Cikago, cantats vonu pluse vonpolitika temoy [18] avu pluse hevimetala sono. Otra gekenda bandoy estats Sarmust jdelu Wacinton DC ce Vot Hezbola jdelu Teksas. Caka bandoy nagrats ce vendats syoyza albumoy, ce multa membroy havats tuttempuwa pracajoy [19]. Praytu la muslima ce hindua imigra folovoy, la grupoy nirekonocats latina punkrokistoy kyo folovats dyayza muziko. Bostonay antropologisto dicats ke la identitatay mesadjo je la muziko konektyuts imigra populadjoy, ce la muvmento estats “bona oportuno cfuru stereotipway smacwajo [20].”


Enu tratajo jwi rompware [21] dyayza stereotipo, La Kominoy cantuts cansionoy enu Hindi furu dyayza neksta albumo anstu nure enu Ingleso. Sama membroy admitats ke dyay no estats necese nakreligiona [22], trotsu vwelajoy ji dyayza familioy. Trotske la bandoy feysats sama diskriminajo kawsu dyayza aperta atitudo, dyay aynde fokuswuts [23] awnu dyayza muziko.


[1] Weyland_Masatcusets (Wayland, Massachusetts) is the name of a city and state. In Ayola, an underscore is used to separate the two names instead of the comma used in English. The underscore is only used for this purpose.


[2] bando nameda jwi La Kominoy (band named The Kominas) is a noun phrase using the trailing adjective nameda (named) and the link jwi (of (as direct object)) which links the having of a relation (nameda) to the object of that relation (La Kominoy).


[3] muvmento jenu Amérika (movement in America) is a noun phrase using the link jenu formed from the preposition enu (in).


[4] sudasiay ce mezdogay punka roko (South Asian and Middle Eastern punk rock) uses the Type I relational adjectives sudasiay (of South Asia) and mezdogay (of the Middle East).


[5] naktradiciona muslimoy (traditional Muslims) is a noun phrase using the complex adjective naktradiciona (according to tradition) formed by prefixing the preposition root nak- (according to) to the noun root tradicion- (tradition).


[6] subkulturo jdelu konservativa originyisoy (subculture stemming from conservative origins) is a noun phrase using the link jdelu formed from the preposition delu (from).


[7] swaloy kyasu lo vivajo … (issues such as life …) is a noun phrase using the relative preposition kyasu (such as).


[8] konfligajo (conflict) is the event abstraction noun for the verb konfligare (to conflict).


[9] medio (means) is an object noun derived from the preposition medu (by means of) by using the -i- suffix.


[10] originyats (originates) is a intransitive verb form belonging to the intransitive/transitive verb pair origin(y/w)are (to originate/ to (cause to) originate).


[11] gevipucajo (release) is the event abstraction noun for the direct object passive verb gevipucare (to be released (to be made available to the public)). The ge- prefix makes the verb passive and clarifies that the noun is the thing being released.


[12] naformazits (were forming) is a causative verb form derived by adding the causative suffix -az- (cause to have) to the noun root form- (form).


[13] gedremo (dream) is the derived object noun of the verb dremare (to dream) and means ‘dream (thing dreamed)’.


[14] alu (to) is the goal preposition which specifies the goal of an action. In Ayola, constructions such as ‘help .. to embark’, where the infinitive is not the direct object of the verb, must be connected to the verb by a preposition.


[15] nonnakislama (un-Islamic) is an adjective formed by prefixing the preposition root nak- (according to) to the noun root islam- (Islam) and adding the prefix non- (not).


[16] varyare (to vary) is the intransitive verb belonging to the intransitive/transitive verb pair var(y/w)are (to vary / to (cause to) vary).


[17] mikswats (mixes) is the causative verb form belonging to the verb triplet miks(-/y/w)are (to be mixed with / to mix with/ to cause .. to mix with).


[18] vonpolitika temoy (political topics) is a noun phrase using the complex adjective vonpolitika (about politics) formed by prefixing the preposition root von- (about, concerning) to the noun root politik- (politics).


[19] tuttempuwa pracajoy (full-time jobs) is a noun phrase using the complex adjective tuttempuwa (during all of a time) formed by joining the quantifier tut- (all of) to the noun root temp- (time (interval)) and adding the suffix –uw- which stands for the preposition dumu (during).


[20] oportuno cfuru stereotipway smacwajo (opportunity for stereotype-smashing) is a noun phrase using the link cfuru formed from the preposition furu (for the benefit/purpose of). It also contains the noun phrase stereotipway smacwajo (stereotype smashing) which uses the Type II relational adjective stereotipway (of (as object) a stereotype). Smacwajo is the event abstraction noun of the causative transitive verb smacware which belongs to the intransitive/transitive verb pair smac(y/w)are (to smash /  to (cause to) smash).


[21] tratajo jwi rompware (an attempt to break) is a noun phrase using the link jwi (of (as direct object)) which links the event abstraction noun tratajo to its object rompware. rompware is the causative transitive verb which belongs to the intransitive/transitive verb pair romp(y/w)are (to break / to (cause to) break).


[22] nakreligiona (religious) is a complex adjective formed by prefixing the preposition root nak- (according to) to the noun root religion- (religion) so that the meaning literally translates to ‘according to religion.’


[23] fokuswuts (will focus) is a causative transitive verb form of the verb fokusware which belongs to the intransitive/transitive verb pair fokus(y/w)are (to focus / to (cause to) focus). This form is used because there is an implied object, i.e. they are focusing their attention onto their music.


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