Anjimile - In Your Eyes

Song of the Day
Hosted by Cheryl Waters

Today's Song of the Day, as chosen by Cheryl Waters, host of the Midday Show on KEXP, is "In Your Eyes" by Anjimile, from the 2020 album Giver Taker on Father/Daughter Records.


 
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pHOTO by Kannetha Brown
written by janice headley

On his debut album, Giver Taker, Boston-based musician Anjimile was inspired by “faith, addiction, and [their] own transition.” Today's Song of the Day examines the unfair perceptions of others, with Anjimile explaining in a press release, “This is another song about grappling with homophobia and ultimately recognizing that I am what I am. It’s a somber song, but the sorrow is for those who would live their lives constricted by such bigotry.”

He elaborates in an interview with American Songwriter

When I was in fourth grade, my homeroom teacher gave us a sort of “family tree/genealogy” assignment. This included learning the meaning (if any) behind our given names, so that day I went home and I asked my parents what “Anjimile” meant. They told me that “Anjimile” means “denied” in Chichewa (the native language of Malawi, where my family is from), and that one of my aunts had cried out “oh, Anjimile” when I was born because she was hoping my parents would have a son. In this context, “Anjimile” means “denied a boy.” There’s a couple of lyrics in this song that go “Does my body divide / was my body denied?”, and they’re quite literal and based around the aforementioned context. The whole song is related to my relationship with my gender, my sexuality, my name, my family. Funny how things connect. 

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