Happy Birthday, Yuna!

Malaysian superstar-singer, Yuna turns 30 today! We’re celebrating our homegrown talent of her 30th birthday by commemorating the time she stood up for what she believes in.

Following the most recent scandal, Yuna faced upset from her fans and critics of her ‘PDA’  (public display of affection) with R&B singer Usher.


Yuna spoke out on the discrimination she received by her own race on a now-deleted Instagram post. In her caption, she wrote:

“My father always told me ‘You make your own decision. You can think. Why do you have to listen to other people?’ Isn’t it weird, the biggest racism and discrimination that I’ve ever faced, was never from the Americans- it was from my own race. There I’ve said it.

They call me ‘perempuan sampah’ and tell me to ‘might as well go naked’. The worst, hurtful & sexist things I’ve ever had thrown to me, were from the lips of the Malays. All I can do is be patient. Allah is great. And Alhamdulillah for everything.

So this is me. I will wear whatever I want. I will show my appreciation whether it’s a handshake, or a hug, to my friends, this is me. Save your mediocre downgrading religious preach to yourself, they have no meaning to me.”

Source: https://hype.my/2016/115027/yuna-malaysian-netizens-criticise-songstress-for-hugging-usher-on-stage/

Her fans followed suit because… #YunaPower

Yuna also spoke to SF Weekly openly regarding her hijab:

And you’re also Muslim which is really cool and different from most artists in the U.S. Do you feel like you’re helping to change negative stereotypes of your religion?

Because I didn’t grow up in America, I’m kind of brave about it. I still hold my Islamic values close to me. When I came out here, I was just kind of like, ‘Well, I’m Muslim and Malaysian. I’m different, so I’m just going to be myself and see what happens.’ And it seems like it’s okay. I’m still here and I’m surviving and I still get to do music. I just carry myself the way I’ve been carrying myself my whole life, and it’s nice to see that people are appreciating that — not just the Muslim community in America but people from different walks of life. I’m so happy that so far I’ve never had any bad experiences when it comes to discrimination and stuff like that.

Have you ever been told by anyone that you shouldn’t wear the hijab? That it could be bad for your image?

Not from the music industry. You would think that the American music industry is all about sex, but you have girls like Adele who are beautiful and don’t sell their bodies or sex appeal. So I feel like I can relate to her in that sense. So when it comes to changing my image, no, not really. I think a lot of people like it. I cover my hair and people never seem to care. Sometimes people are like, ‘Why don’t you take off your hijab and let down your hair?’ I get those comments once in a while, but it doesn’t bother me. It’s just that maybe they don’t understand where I’m coming from. And I don’t take it too seriously. I can’t really change that, but I can just be myself and not care what anyone else says.”

Source: http://archives.sfweekly.com/shookdown/2016/05/13/malaysian-pop-singer-yuna-on-moving-to-los-angeles-being-more-candid-in-her-new-album-and-wearing-a-hijab