Sabir Hussain Public Choice Winner 202126th January 2022
Continuing on our 2021 Winner Interview series, we talk with Sabir Hussain from British Asian Radio who won for Public Choice at the 2021 Unsung Hero Awards. Sabir talks about his 26 years in the music industry, how his involvement in governmental work has helped disabled and underprivileged youth, how his loyalty to the NHS saw him put forward for an Unsung Hero Award as well as what winning an Unsung Hero Award meant to him.
Hi Sabir, can you explain your background in Music and how long you have been involved in the industry?
First, I would like to thank all the Team at Unsung Hero Awards and my nominator Mohammed Ali for nominating me for this prestigious award. I have been in the music industry for 26 years starting while I was studying Events Management at Leeds Met University. Whilst still a student I wanted to utilise my DJ skills in providing quality entertainment to students at a reasonable rate in local nightclubs.
I set up a promotion company called Goodfellaz Promotion in order to promote young new talent while I DJ. I helped start up famous Musicians like Punjabi MC and Jay Sean, as well as pioneering British Asian Fusion music with BBC Asian Network DJ Bobby Friction. In 1998 I was the first British Asian promoter to organise Events at the famous Ministry of Sound Nightclub and I went on to work with American Rappers like Black Eyed Peas in 2004 and many more.
Winning for Public Choice at the 2021 Unsung Hero Awards with Sponsor TAP (left)
Alongside the music industry, can you tell us more about your Governmental work in helping those who are classed as Disabled and Underprivileged?
In 2007 I started working with the Home Office and I was tasked to provide plans to help young people and disabled people by providing creative ideas, such as setting up Arts ,Culture and Music projects, which also was intended to help vulnerable people get away from crime and into creative projects. The projects also helped me to find British Talent such as Musicians and Rappers from deprived communities. In 2018 I was tasked by the Office for National Statistics to survey areas which it was felt needed British Culture Awareness.
Your nomination states that your loyalty towards the NHS resulted in helping with Media and Art projects – how so?
During the Covid Lockdown, I started to do extra shows on British Asian Radio to provide 24-hour Music and Covid Awareness through my DJs. This was aimed at National NHS staff. We interviewed over 30 NHS staff, including Nurses, Porters and GP’s, to hear their opinions on the Covid Crisis and to talk about the very important task of saving lives. At the peak of Covid cases, in April 2020, we had over 20,000 listeners on British Asian Radio per week who tuned in online.
Another reason I wanted to create awareness of the Covid crisis was because I was a victim of Covid and I was in Airedale Hospital for two weeks recovering. As well as using British Asian Radio as a platform, I also promoted hard working NHS staff through local media such as Newspapers. In June 2021, the Prime Minister’s Office called me after recognising the hard work that I have put into British Asian Radio overall and awarded me with his “Points of Lights Award”.
How did it feel to win for Public Choice at the 2021 Unsung Hero Awards?
I was very emotional and overwhelmed by receiving the prestigious Unsung Hero Award. It was my second Honour of the year and it reminded me of when I used to hand out club flyers at 3am in the morning in the freezing cold and rain when everyone else was inside the venue enjoying themselves.
What exciting projects do you have coming up in 2022?
This year I am planning to work on two motion film projects: a British Crime Thriller with American Actors and organising more events to promote Young and Disabled Talent on music shows over the Summer. I’m looking forward of the entire lifting of lockdown restrictions so I can move forward with more Arts and Media Projects.