Fun was the key word for Yazmin Yousuf when looking out for a career and radio gave her the kind of fun she was looking for.
After growing up in Dubai, Yazmin moved to Sri Lanka and got her opportunity in radio at EFM as a Radio Personality (RP). She became popular while hosting the late evening show ‘The Wind Down Zone’ as her soft voice was ideal for the program. Now at YES FM, Yazmin has reached even greater heights in her career and has also become a successful radio producer.
“It has been one heck of a journey since 2010 and it is one of those radio stations where there is never a dull moment, there is always opportunity for growth and you learn something, almost every day! I have expanded from being an Imaging/Commercial Producer to doing videos and even have gone on to becoming the official female voice over artist & imaging producer for some of the biggest shows – Jay Sean Live In Sri Lanka, Shaggy Live In Sri Lanka, Avicii Live In Colombo, Da Fresh and STOMP among many others,” she said. Yazmin also says she does a lot more for the local music scene through the ‘YES Home Grown Top 15’ which has showcased the diversity of local musicians. Apart from radio, Yazmin is also involved in many other things including writing, event handling.
“How can anyone be in radio and not get involved in other fun things around them? Radio has always been such a well of knowledge and that coupled with experiences gives you a chance to excel better in life and in turn you end up contributing to life. Not only have I been writing for CHoKoLAATe Magazine since 2009 (Quickies) but also help with organizing Alternative Sunday and the former MotherElektro. Furthermore it has helped me to learn PR and Event handling which I wouldn’t have learned from anywhere else. My other works can be found on The Pada Show with Ray Jay (youtube) and my article contributions as a writer for The Backdoor Magazine (defunct online publication) and the Tuk Tuk Thosai. In May you will see the launch of a news site dedicated to Sri Lanka’s contemporary English music scene which is a collaboration between me and Houzni Yakoob, a to watch out for,” she said.
Yazmin’s biggest involvement, and most successful, outside radio is with Alternative Sunday which takes place once a month.
“Alternative Sunday is Anil Balasuriya’s brain child and I am glad that he chose me to be a part of it. The thinking behind it was really to give a stage and well deserved promotions to the names from the home music scene and we have seen plenty of names getting the recognition they deserve like Ras Ceylon, Duckdog etc,” she said. Commenting on the radio scene in Sri Lanka and the talent with local radio personalities, Yazmin says over the years she has seen a lesser foreign influence on local radio personalities because of more mentors from the radio scene emerging and helping new comers to find the right direction.
“Through personal experience there are times when people from the industry can criticize you harshly for sounding different and being different but that is just what the Industry needs right now, people who are real to themselves and no one else. Not a parrot, not a wannabe, just simple old them,” Yazmin said.
And as for the music industry, Yazmin feels 2011 was a pretty strong year for rock and metal music in Sri Lanka but the focus has gradually shifted to EDM.
“EDM has made a pretty big entry into the home music scene with artists emerging from regions you wouldn’t think of, like Kandy (Daffy Maestro) & Kurunegala (Thricona) taking over. Every month sees me receive about at least 4-5 EDM tracks for the show. Hip hop, Rap and RnB is not dead in the city but after the revival in December last year with Various Artists like Randhir, Shiraz, Urban Sounds (Krishan & Mahesh), BK and Huzni releasing a track called ‘Run This Town’ and talent like Markia, J-Nil, Leone, Twisted Minit, Spike and Dawn Jay are really pushing forward, it died an early death due to new material not coming out and a lack of gigs,” she added. (Colombo Gazette)