YASMEEN* blends R&B and pop on her latest single, “Drive”

Yasmeen, wearing a black skirt, sits in a parking lot with downtown Dallas behind her

Photo: Maia Fox

Plenty of local musicians have day jobs — gigs that pay the bills in order to pursue their true passions at nights and on the weekends.

But few local musicians offer the response Yasmeen Nasir does when asked about her nine-to-five occupation.

“I am a project engineer at Lockheed Martin, and that’s pretty much all I’m allowed to say about my job,” Nasir said via email. “I’m not allowed to discuss my projects or my day-to-day job, but I can say that I get to work with our technical subject matter experts, our customers and even the government.”

Well, all righty then. Nasir, who performs under the name YASMEEN*, has made a strong impression in a short time in North Texas, releasing her debut album, Pure Bliss, last fall, and dropping her new single, “Drive,” earlier this month.

The track is a gorgeous slice of windows-down, R&B-tinged pop, with Nasir’s expressive voice tucked between thumping bass and glowing synths, and a chorus which will lodge in your head for days.

“I think I can see myself fitting into the Dallas scene once I drop some more new music,” Nasir said via email. “I feel like I am heading towards more of a R&B/pop direction that I think will sound very different from my previous album, and I’m very excited to share it with everyone.”

Nasir — who counts Snoh Aalegra, Sidibe and Pharrell as inspirations — is also motivated by her status as a visible figure of representation for the next generation.

“I believe the lack of Middle Eastern representation in the pop/R&B music world is what drives me,” she said via email. “I never really grew up with someone like me to look up to when it came to pop culture and music. Being able to do music and perform around the DFW area this past year has been so fulfilling and I honestly can’t wait to do more.”

Nasir is working on a new EP, the follow-up to Pure Bliss, for potential release later this year, and planning more performances in Dallas and, potentially, Austin: “We’ll see what’s in store for me,” she said via email.

Preston Jones is a North Texas freelance writer and regular contributor for KXT. Our work is made possible by our generous, music-loving members. If you like how we lift up local music, consider becoming a KXT sustaining member right here.