Loolwa Khazzoom

New “I Love My JewFro!” Single and Music Video Embody the Spirit of Hanukkah

On Dec 3, Iraqis in Pajamas releases, “I Love My JewFro!” – a song and music video featuring an Iraqi Hanukkah song and defiantly celebrating Jewish features that historically have been denigrated.

Seattle, WA – In the anti-assimilationist spirit of the original Hanukkah uprising, Seattle band Iraqis in Pajamas calls on Jews worldwide to say, “No!” to Jewish body shaming, through the band’s new single and music video, “I Love My JewFro!” The song is sung in Hebrew and English, incorporating original rock music and lyrics with the traditional Iraqi song for the holiday, “Ya Hasel Yona.” In addition, the music video features Hanukkah candle-lighting.

In the wake of the pandemic, Iraqis in Pajamas band mates went their separate ways, after playing together for five years, and the band morphed into a virtual musical project – spearheaded by singer, songwriter, bass player, and band founder Loolwa Khazzoom. “I Love My JewFro!” song and music video are the band’s first virtual recording projects, featuring four musicians from two countries, who never met: Chris Belin from Pittsburgh, PA (drum composition and performance), Dominik Vladulovič from Vancouver, BC (guitar composition and performance), Nat Seelen, from Boston MA (saxophone composition and performance), and Loolwa Khazzoom from Seattle, WA (bass, melody, and lyrics composition, as well as bass and vocals performance). See musician bios below, for details. The single and music video were recorded in each musician’s home, with the audio track mixed and mastered by Sean Sebastian of Bard Rock Studios. Music video production and single cover graphic design were by Quentin Lightner of Lighting Tech Seattle.

Ya hasel yona mehaka
Wedeem atha lach mefaka
Watees mahbach ata malka
Bishmonath yeme Hanukah

I love my JewFro
And I love my JewNose
Brown hair brown eyes
That’s how my Jew goes

So f*** your nose bobs
Straightening hair jobs
My Middle Eastern roots
Refuse to be robbed

Old Abe and Sarah
From Mesopotamia
Dancing in my hair
And on my nose yeah

I won’t erase them
I’m part of this nation
Trotting across the globe
For generations

You may have light skin
And you may blend in
But darling you ain’t White
So just stop trying

Now let your nose show
And let your hair go
Your JewFro rocks
It’s gravity-defying

Endorsement Excerpts
Loolwa is a force of nature. It’s no surprise to us that…her courageous heart expresses itself so eloquently in the hurricane of her gritty music. – Deva Premal & Miten, Billboard chart-topping musicians

Loolwa Khazzoom is a brilliant lyricist and a dedicated artist, with the ability to teach through her art. Loolwa and her band, Iraqis in Pajamas, bring deeply personal truth through song and lyric and make us think through our own human reaction, through their profound and often cathartic performances. We need more of this!  We need more art that makes us think in this turbulent world. Loolwa is the pearl in the oyster of a nation in great need of more awareness and enlightened thinking. – Lara Lavi, Grammy Award-winning musician

See full endorsements here.

About Iraqis in Pajamas
In turn vulnerable and angry, haunting and inspiring, Seattle-area band Iraqis in Pajamas disarms audiences, opening them to deep contemplation about trauma, healing, and transformation. With songs in English, Judeo-Arabic, and Hebrew, the band has a unique sound – an innovative blend of ancient Iraqi Jewish prayers, alternative rock, and personal storytelling about topics as varied as cancer, domestic violence, racism, mental illness, street harassment, family caregiving, and national exile.

About “I Love My JewFro!” Musicians
Front woman Loolwa Khazzoom has had a meandering career as a musician, educator, writer, and more, all with the central organizing principle of individual and collective healing. Her work has been featured in top media including The New York Times and Rolling Stone; she has presented at leading venues including Harvard University and the Simon Wiesenthal Center; and she has published two books, taught throughout the Ivy League and at universities nationwide – The Flying Camel: Essays on Identity by Women of North African and Middle Eastern Jewish Heritage and Consequence: Beyond Resisting Rape. Ultimately ditching her power suit and power point in favor of combat boots and cat glasses, Khazzoom now offers bold songwriting as the catalyst for deep and heart-centered conversation.

Drummer Chris Belin is the sole proprietor of Chris Belin’s Traveling Drum School & Freelance Drumming. He has performed 85-150 shows per year in many parts of the United States since the early 2000’s, working with over 30 bands and artists in all genres. He has also appeared on over 100 recordings, including over 40 official studio releases. He also has logged in over 19,000 individual drum lessons and was voted “#1 Drum Lessons in Pittsburgh” via, and he is endorsed by companies including Canopus Drums, Los Cabos Drumsticks, Soultone Cymbals, Attack Drumheads, RB Drum Co., Creative Percussion, and Drum Factory Direct. 

Guitarist Dominik Vladulovic is a composer, guitarist, vocalist, and bass player who came to Vancouver, BC from Slovakia, when he was 27. He works as a music teacher, live performer, and session musician. Dominik has played music for over 20 years and studied classical guitar at the Conservatory of J. L. Bella in Banska Bystrica, Slovakia, and he has worked on over 50 original songs and compositions.

Saxophone player Nat Seelen is a musician, educator, and nonprofit leader based in Boston, MA. He is the artistic director of the Boston Festival of New Jewish Music and the clarinetist for internationally-recognized Ezekiel’s Wheels Klezmer Band. On any given night, you might find him playing saxophone with an afrobeat band, clarinet with a New Orleans jazz band, or percussion with an orchestra around the New England area. In past lives, he has been a zookeeper, a comic book librarian, a management consultant, and an AP music theory teacher.