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DuBoiz Shares Deets About His Track Dope Dream & The MMA16 Nod

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duboiz interview

Fresh from inking the deal with Durban-based recording label Mabala Noise, he jetted off to shoot his music video with Tyga in the United States. Born and raised in Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal, rapper and producer Sandile Nhlakanipho Kubheka also referred to as DuBoiz is unfazed by the prospect of being in the same record label as the award winning artists and industry veterans that make up the roster for Mabala Noise. Fast forward 12 months later since his first song on radio, he is nominated in the Metro FM Music Awards in the Best Video category for his jam Dope Dream. We spoke to the rapper about his aspirations and the timeline to the drop of his full body of work.Du Boiz


QuenchSA: What Inspired the stage name DuBoiz?


DuBoiz: I was named after a civil rights legend William Edward Burghardt Du Bois. My father was one of the people that fought for the liberation of the country back in the day. He used to make me to watch your Malcolm X,  would tell me all about civil rights legends, your Oliver Tambos. Its not on my ID document but its a  name I liked and they used to call me all the time.


QuenchSA: At what point did you realize that music is what you wanted to do for a living?


DuBoiz: For a living I think it was back in 2011 but I had been recording ever since 2008. My big brother then Thabo Mlangeni is the one who told me to record my first song. I used to do it for fun until it got to a point where I thought I can’t do anything else. That’s when I started hustling to try and get into the industry.


QuenchSA: You’ve been very vocal about your upbringing. Do you feel it has prepared you for life in the public eye?


DuBoiz: Most definitely! I come from a place where my grandmother used to say a person is a person because of other people. Everyone needs help. I remember there were times where we didn’t have food to eat so all of that taught me to be humble and to appreciate all my blessings.


QuenchSA: For your third single and video you already had an international approach. Why was that important?


DuBoiz: I think everyone in the industry especially in Africa pray and wish that one day they can compete with the superstars we see on TV all the time. By superstars I mean American musicians. For me to work with someone from that side and to have a director from that side in Hollywood shooting the video meant a lot. People don’t know that he chose the song, we sent some songs that side and he chose it because he liked it and I respect him for that.


QuenchSA: Your second single in as many months features multi-award winning artist AKA. There’s a certain go big or go home approach about you?


DuBoiz: You gotta risk it to get the biscuit!


QuenchSA: Can we expect a full body of work this year?


DuBoiz: Everyone has been asking about that, I think I have three singles already. I’m still building a fan base, last year this time I didn’t have a song on radio, this year this time I’m nominated for the Metro FM M for Best Video. Because we’ve done so much in terms of being here for quite some time, its been only eleven month since I’ve had a song on radio. I’m in no rush. When I feel like it’s my time then I’ll drop the album.



QuenchSA: Mabala Noise. How did that come about?


DuBoiz: I was just recording and wanted to do it independently and own everything. I approached my father for funds to shoot a video. He sent the music to Babu Reggy Nkabinde who is the boss right now just to ask for advice to invest money into my music. He listened to the music and sent me to Dj Bongz in Durban so that I could chill with him and come up with something dope. After a week or two I came back and made them listen to the music. That’s when he (Reggy) decided that you can’t do this independently, you have something, so I’m going to sign you. That’s when I got the deal in 2016.


QuenchSA: For your first two singles you didn’t feature any of your label-mates. Is that going to be the same for the album?


DuBoiz: No! Its just the singles that I released now that I don’t have my stable mates. But we are family and we talk all the time. I want to feature every artist from the label even the house deejays. When the time is right its going to happen.


QuenchSA: You’ve been nominated for the upcoming MMA16 in the Best Video category. You feel like its the first of many?


DuBoiz: Definitely! Obviously there’s the likes of Kwesta , AKA, your Nasty Cs…these are people I was to listen to on radio back in 2015. To be a nominee means a lot, to be nominated against your Mafikizolo, Khuli Chanas, Anatii, I can tell that people love what I do and this is only the beginning.


QuenchSA: Your first few months in the industry were something off a story book. What does 2017 have in store for you?


DuBoiz: Well, right now we pushing for the votes, and we going to try and push for the music video for Halleluja, we haven’t shot it yet, still working on it. After we going to drop more singles just to build the fan base. Hopefully I’ll get to work with a lot of people in South Africa, I also have dreams and would like to work with my role models. For now just trying to build everyday.


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Interviews

Sir LSG: Perfection Matters – Not So Much The Accolades – Interview

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Select Sessions Sir LSG

The way Sir LSG approaches music is microscopic. He takes all these elements – tiny sounds that don’t typically register to an ear that isn’t technically sharpened to detect and achieve sonic balance – very seriously. He’s also a perfectionist, which meant finishing his much-celebrated album, Moving Circles, was no easy feat.

We had the privilege of hearing from the man ahead of his set at Play Sessions in Braamfontein this Thursday, September 6th.

You started out studying electrical engineer before a passion for records and music took over. Tell us about your record collection?

I started collecting records right at the beginning of my first year at WITS, and in hindsight, engineering was never really going to work well for me. My record collection is quite small, because in 2006 when I started playing, CDs were becoming popular in the clubs. My friends and I would share records when we had a gig, to assist with the limited range.

Your mentor was/is DJ Christos, “The Godfather of House” and one of South Africa’s most respected house producers. Tell us how his work inspires you?

I met DJ Christos back in 2008 at an SAMC conference, when I had just won the DJ competition for the conference, and Chris took me under his wing. For a few months I would travel with him to his gigs and he would give me his last 15 – 20 minutes of his sets. It meant a lot to be able to travel with one of our country’s house music icons – I can never be grateful enough for those moments.

Your “Sax In The City” soulful house mix reached the second spot on Traxsource’s top singles chart in 2011, and in 2014 they voted you at Number 20 on the Top 100 Afro House Producers of the year. Tell us how these accolades helped define your career?

It’s always nice to see my releases reach charts on Traxsource because globally they are the leading House Music store. But those accolades don’t really mean much, I’m only happy and grateful that there are people out there who enjoy the music I make.

You’ve worked alongside global and local acts, such as Ralf GUM and R&B singer/songwriter Brian Temba. Who has been your favourite collaboration to date and why?

The most important thing for me when working with other artists is to really have a “vibe”. As soon as musicians “vibe” you’ll hear it in their music. I always enjoy working with Ralf Gum and Thandi Ntuli because they are the two people I spend a lot of studio time with.

What can people expect from your Select Sessions gig on 6th September at PUMA?

Expect nothing but solid soulful house music. See you on the dance floor.

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Interviews

Deep House Ace Kat La Kat Is Not Chasing The Wave – Interview

Kat La Kat takes us through his approach to House music as he preps a set at the looming PUMA Select Sessions

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Kat La Kat

If you’ve had the privilege of enjoying Kat La Kat’s abstract and organic sets, you would appreciate his technical showmanship and the clear fact that he loves music. The house music DJ prefers diving into his enriched pool of vast house offerings than merely amplifying popular sounds.  We got him to delve a bit deeper into his creative processes in this Q and A.

You’re known for your Deep Vibes mix series, which has a cult following. How did this first come about?

I felt the need to put out tracks that wouldn’t generally be heard in clubs in my area at the time, a sound that was a bit more dark and less catchy. Stuff people would say is too calm, too deep, too underground to play in front of a crowd, so I decided to create a mix series that one can indulge in their own space, with no pressure to make people dance.

You’ve played in nightclubs in and around Pretoria and Johannesburg for more than a decade now. Any advice for aspiring DJs and producers?

Trust your taste! A lot tend to follow what works for other artists and they struggle with consistency because it was never really their taste. Do you and do you good …the rest will fall in place

You’re experimental, use mixing techniques and like to take people on a journey with your deep house sets. What’s a sound you’re loving right now?

I dig deep tech house and quite a few local producers are putting out some awesome sounds.

You’ve been producing your own music since 2006. How has the local house music scene developed since then and where do you think it’s going?

I think it has developed in a very good way, we’ve always had the groove but we lacked sonic quality and little technical stuff that goes into a production. Guys are making the effort to have their tunes professionally mixed and mastered and that’s a step in the right direction.

What can people expect from your Select Sessions gig on 6th September at PUMA?

A Kat La Kat experience, you need to hear it to know what I’m talking about! You can expect the unexpected.

Select Sessions 6 Sept Artwork

 

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5 Minutes With House Music Dab hands Punk Mbedzi

We caught up with South African House Music maestro Punk Mbedzi ahead of his set at the SELECT SESSIONS

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Punk Mbedzi
Photo Credit: Punk Mbedzi via Instagram

He will be setting the decks ablaze at the upcoming PUMA Select Sessions in Braamfontein this Thursday, September 6th. And House music maestro – Punk Mbedzi took a moment to reflect on his come up, unpack the genesis of his sound, as well as his creative vision for The Rhythm Johannesburg – a project he founded.

You’ve made a name for yourself in house music circles, and your sound could be described as House/Indie, Dance /Electronic and Afro beats. Do you prefer variation in your style and why?

I have always tried to be versatile with the music that I produce and not box myself into one style. I prefer variation in my music because I’m always trying to improve my sound. Usually, I draw inspiration from different genres and try to implement it into what I’m doing.

RELATED: SIR LSG, KAT LA KAT & PUNK MBEDZI TO PLAY SELECT SESSIONS 

Known by your DJ name Punk Mbedzi, it’s said that music is your staple diet. Who are you listening to right now?

There is a new wave of fresh talent coming from South Africa from artists like Kususa, Argento Dust and FKA Mash. They are pushing the boundaries of what Afro House should sound like, which is refreshing to hear.

Hailing from Polokwane, you began producing at age 16. Any tips for local up-and-comings?

From an early age music has always been a passion for me. A very important thing I would share is to never lose faith and try by all means to keep the passion burning – that’s the only thing that will keep you pushing. It’s also important to educate yourself about the music industry and the business behind it.

You’re the Event Director for event production series, The Rhythm Johannesburg. What’s your vision for this brand, in one or two sentences?

I would like to build a brand known for really great music. Regardless of the status of the featured artists, it should set a global footprint for being a place where people know they can discover fresh and good music.

You’re hosting September’s instalment of PUMA Select Sessions in Braamfontein. Tell us what people can expect on the night?

From the first artist to the last, it’s set to be a musical journey. Although every artist is distinct in their sound, there will be cohesion in what the music brings.

Select Sessions 6 Sept Artwork

 

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