The endeavor of a musician who embraces Islam and brings his art in line with the Islamic way often results in tunes that please the ears and soothe the hearts. Artists like Yusuf Islam, Sami Yusuf, and Maher Zain, whose songs we all love, are living examples of this. However, Dawud Wharnsby, for some reason, hasn’t gained the same level of fame in Turkey. Nevertheless, his music, which fills the listener with joy, and his modest personality make him a name worth knowing.
A Life to the Fullest
Born in Canada in 1972, Dawud, who is known as a poet, educator, performer, and television personality alongside his career centered around music, is a truly versatile personality. Such a multifaceted individual doesn’t just appear out of thin air. As you might expect, his relationship with art, the human spirit, and even religions goes back to his youth.
Dawud first started acting in the theater at the young age of 18. During the same year, he began working on a puppet show called “Kids On The Block,” where disabled characters were featured. It is known that he had volunteered for this show for two years before working there. Dawud got involved with a music group called “Crackenthrap’s Teapot” at the same time. You can understand that Dawud has always been a deeply involved person, intensely connected to art, the human spirit, and various interests.
When he reached the age of twenty, Dawud set out for the United Kingdom, where he met Yusuf Islam, whom he had admired for many years. This meeting with Yusuf Islam went beyond admiration for his music; it influenced Dawud on a deeper level, playing a significant role in his spiritual development.
While his music career continued for a while, Dawud embraced Islam at a very young age, in 1993. After this, his relationship with music changed drastically. He signed with a company that catered to Muslim artists and released his first album, “A Whisper of Peace,” consisting of nasheeds (Islamic songs). The album achieved worldwide success, and of course, more albums followed. Despite receiving numerous invitations to perform, he didn’t want to showcase his nasheeds for commercial purposes. As a result, he took a three-year break from the stage.
In the following years, he wrote songs and poems for children, hosted a radio program called “Noor Al Islam,” and collaborated with several prominent figures leading the way for Islam in the West. Now, he spends his days reading the Quran with his family, competing in poetry with his stepson, and even tending to farming, wherever he may be.
In short, we are talking about a life that cannot be fully encapsulated in a brief description. To learn more, you can visit his website, wharnsby.com.
The Essence of Islam
Dawud’s conversion to Islam, like many reverts, is a story of self-discovery. In an interview, Dawud mentions, “For me, art is not the goal but the path to the goal.” He uses his songs and poems as tools to understand himself better. During this quest, he was influenced by the Bible, the Quran, the stories of the prophets, and finally, he reached a conviction in the truth of a divine religion.
According to Dawud, all the answers are in the Quran. In recent years, he states that he has drawn inspiration from the Quran, hadiths, children, and nature for his songs. These sources of inspiration are a perfect reflection of Dawud’s character. May Allah increase the number of beautiful hearts like his.