Malaysian hijabi rapper gains attention in US press

Perak teen Noor Ayu Fatini Mohd Bakhari, better known as Bunga is becoming famous as a hijabi rapper recently.

The 19-year-old girl who wears a hijab and baju kurung shot to fame earlier this year after performing Joe Flizzow’s rap cypher, “16 Baris”.

Bunga’s ’16 Baris’ video has garnered over 1.4 million views on YouTube.

Bunga raps about love, being bullied and her experience working at a gadget shop but stays away from obscenity and racism.

“(Being a female rapper) doesn’t mean I have to act like boys or talk about gangsters,” she told South China Morning Post.

Being a musician was not her first career choice.

“My initial dream was to be a politician or a lawyer,” Bunga said.

Last week, the Associated Press had spoken to Bunga before her debut performance for ‘Pesta Raya’ in Singapore.

She told the US news agency about the challenges of rapping in her baju kurung.

“We can’t jump around so much wearing baju kurung,” Bunga said.

The Perak native also shared that she faced backlash for rapping as a hijabi, as she is “bringing down the image of women”.

However, Bunga is unperturbed by the criticism and she is doing what she enjoys.

She told Associated Press that she is “living proof” that hijabis can make it in the male-dominated rap scene.

“I’ve realised that there are more hijabis who want to rap. I think that’s a good thing because you shouldn’t worry about what others say,” Bunga said.

Another famous Malaysian who is a hijabi making waves in the US is Yuna.