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© 2018 by Muhammad Dawjee. Photography by Natasha Dawjee Laurent.

BIO

Muhammad was born and raised Pretoria, South Africa.


He was never formally educated in music, but grew up surrounded by it - in the Malay choral Gadaat recitals his grandfather used to host on Sundays and tinkering at the piano his grandmother bought for his elder sisters (who were already taking lessons when he was born). 

Muhammad was selected as a member of the Standard Bank National Schools’ Big Band for the years 2006, 2007 and 2008 at the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festival, Grahamstown. The 2008 band, conducted by Shannon Mowday also performed at the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz in Johannesburg.


In 2009 he was selected alongside tertiary music students (Sisonke Xonti and others) and local and international professional muscians such as Shannon Mowday, Mike Rossi, Frank Brodahl (Norway) & Arne Hiorth (Norway) to perform as a part of the North Sea Big Band, curated and conducted by Arne Hiorth.

In 2010 he was selected as a member of the New South African Orchestra in 2010 alongside emerging young talents Nhlanhla Daniel Mahlangu, Oscar Rachabane and Billy Monama to perform with a collective of South African Legends such as Barney Rachabane, Khaya Mahlangu, Feya Faku directed and conducted by Dr. Abdullah Ibrahim with his New York Based Quartet – Ekhaya.


He is one of the founding members of the indo-jazz trio Kinsmen, a group that has seen him act as an independent recording artist and co-producer of the SAMA nominated album ‘Window to the Ashram’ (2017) which explores the improvised music of the Indian Subcontinent from an AfrIndian perspective.

Muhammad is based in Johannesburg and has worked on various projects with the likes of Siphephelo Ndlovu, Nhlanhla Ngqaqu, Godfrey Mntambo, Lwanda Gogwana, Tshiamo Nkoane, Siyabonga Mtembu (The Brother Moves On), Darlington Osaji, Ariel Zamonsky and Emmanuel Paul. 

In his capacity as an architect he works as a part-time design lecturer at the University of Pretoria and is working on developing a PhD proposal that investigates postcolonial discourses around the production of space by looking into the relationships between jazz, politics and design.