WHS Birthday Fest. – 15th March

‘1 Day Outdoor Music Festival’

 

Interview with Black Loops (ITA)

Black Loops Returns to Cape Town for We House Sundays’ 5th Birthday

Riccardo Paffeti, or as the music world lovingly knows him, Black Loops will return to We House Sundays. In celebration of their 5th birthday, WHS welcomes you to Transvaal Park, Paarden Eiland on the 15th March 2020. Ahead of Black Loops return to South Africa, let’s get to know the man responsible for many of our favourite dancefloor tracks.

A purveyor of the evolving clubbing landscape, Black Loops effortlessly transitions between and delivers anything from funk to techno. It is this sonic bravery and progressive storytelling that touches and connects with people worlds apart. You never know what to expect, and honestly, it is refreshing in today’s electronic music scene. Originally from a small city called Arezzo, in Tuscany, the Italian Wonder’s roots can be heard through the melodic potency of his music. Riccardo speaks of his initial exposure to music, “thanks to my parents, I’ve always been surrounded by great 70s and 80s soul, funk and pop records, and that is most likely to be considered my musical roots.” He recalls always wanting to play drums, since the age of 2-3 years old, “at the age of 8, my parents finally bought me one, and that’s basically when it all started.”

Black Loops would then go on to explore the sounds of electronic music. He says, “My first encounter with electronic music happened in university (ca. 2002). I used to go to some drum ‘n bass parties during the week and that’s where I got hooked.” As Black Loops interest in music’s various genres naturally evolved, he realised that as much as Drum ‘n Bass was fun to listen to and experience it wasn’t exactly his vibe. He started exploring broken beats, trip hop and similar genres. “The first record that made me fall in love with what we can call House music was Metro Area, a duo from New York that made only one LP, but they’re still a big influence for many of us that produce Deep House and House music.” Relocating from Italy to Berlin has definitely impacted Riccardo’s creative process. “The good thing about moving to Berlin, as a producer and DJ, is that you get massively influenced by the club culture. You get the chance to attend parties, every single day of the week, with the best line ups you can find around.” If anything, the Berlin scene helped him figure out what to ‘take’ from his new environment and what to keep from his Italian roots. What we’re able to hear today, on Black Loops’ tracks, is a beautiful amalgamation of these two European countries’ cultures. Black Loops eloquently elaborates on his productions, “my beats are normally kinda hard (big kicks, big hats and big claps) and that is the ‘Berlin’ side. But, my melodies are always very dreamy and vibey, and it’s definitely my Italian side.”

Black Loops versatility when it comes to music production is impressive and an inspiration for all who are trying to put their experiences into sound. As many will agree, getting into music production, these days, has become fairly easy. With so much advanced software, including Ableton and Logic, practically almost anyone with an interest can get into music production. It’s becoming more necessary to hone your skill, whether it be with software or hardware. “Personally, I’m getting more and more into hardware. Most of my music is made mainly ‘out of the box’. The first drum machine I bought was a very cheap one (Boss DR-202 Dr. Groove). It turns out, this little piece of gear is in almost all of my beats and it’s a special ingredient in all of my recent releases.” For those music producers wanting to create and not fit into the mould of what music is ‘supposed’ to sound like in a particular era, Black Loops says, “choose one piece of gear and dig deep in that. Learn how to use it, as well as in an unconventional way. That’s what will make your music kinda unique.”

As Black Loops tours and travels around the world, he believes it is very important to collaborate with and to see how other artists work, “it’s the best way to get inspired.” During his first South African tour, Black Loops connected with some special and talented South African artists, including Vicmari, Deep Aztec, Rose Bonica, Alex Leeu, and DJ Hara. He says, “I’m looking forward to meeting many others in a few weeks.” If Black Loops first We House Sundays performance is anything to go by, then Sunday People, the birthday block party is set to blow our minds away.

The WHS crowd always nestles deep in the hearts of DJs who come and play at Colorbox Studios, Black Loops can attest to this. “My first impression (of WHS) was that I nearly cried. To be honest, I’ve never experienced such a strong connection with the crowd and such a strong vibe anywhere else. This party is really something special and unique.” Black Loops will certainly be coming through, to the Mother City, with exquisite sonic vibes. Get ready for the Sunday groove that will take place at Transvaal Park, Paarden Eiland on the 15th March 2020.

JAY ME – Favourite 3 Tracks

JAY ME is a DJ making her mark in the electronic music scene. With a captivating taste for groove and a diverse sound, the Cape Town based DJ moves crowds through thoughtfully curated sets. Her passion for music can be felt through the delivery of her performances.

JAY ME recalls her earliest exposure to music beginning at home. “I grew up in a household where, from a young age, my parents would often have guests over where the music almost always ended up becoming the focal point.” This exposure to good music is audible in her range of track selections. She says, “my mother was an artist, and she would also often have an array of music playing in the background – in the house or her studio while working.” JAY ME would hear the sounds of Ismael Lo, Andrea Bocelli and Lionel Richie. “I started playing the piano from a relatively young age, where I was drawn particularly to Jazz.” Her ability to create nostalgia on dancefloors as she selects and plays tracks that the local House scene hasn’t heard in a while, gives her an edge and makes her a favourite on electronic music line-ups! Since her debut performance, in 2016, JAY ME has played some incredible events, including SWIM, CTEMF and Shape/Shift.

When it comes to curating her sets, she says, “anyone who knows me well, knows that I am a bit of a perfectionist and this often means that I am more inclined to pre-plan my sets.” JAY ME is continuously sourcing new tracks/sounds. “I like to play out and plan how these might intertwine with each other as well as with my existing collection.” Through her growing sound, she believes that over time and experience she has garnered the ability to anticipate a required mood for various crowds, “based on the event or set time, and this plays a large role in my curation.” On the 14-16 December, Sunday People will get to experience this powerhouse in the making. Ahead of her We House Sundays Festival set, she says, “I intend to celebrate and channel a few of my favourite local artists, but I don’t want to give too much away, so let me just say, House, House, and more HOUSE!”

In preparation for the unforgettable We House Sundays 2-Day Festival that awaits, JAY ME shares three of her favourite tracks to play at the moment. Enjoy!

Jkriv – Aguaxire

This is probably one of my favourite releases that I’ve come across this year. The 9-minute track takes you on a complete journey with its seemingly local vocals, moody chords, trumpet and acid bassline (which I love).

Dwson – Bemuda

It goes without saying that everything Dwson touches, turns to gold. I really love the build up on this one, and it has been received really well in recent sets.

Dasco – African Power

At the beginning of this month, I had the privilege of meeting and opening for Tel Aviv-born artist, Dasco. Her latest EP, entitled ‘African Power’, was aptly released on Local Talk the day that she arrived in South Africa, for the very first time. I love the whole EP, but the strong baseline and layers of percussions are what have drawn me particularly to ‘African Power’.

By Mandy Alexander

Conversations with Jullian Gomes

We House Sundays caught up with the sonically emotive genius, Jullian Gomes. Amid the DJ and producer’s latest album release, “Slow Poison”, we thought it fitting to get to know the man responsible for some of South Africa’s classic House hits.

Over the years, Jullian Gomes has created distinguishable House music. Through his vision and execution, we are reminded of the aural powers House music possesses. With Jullian Gomes, every album release is a journey and evolution of sound. There is a heartfelt vulnerability achieved through his music. He says, “I have a lot of respect for music and feel that I need to give it all of me. Hopefully, people can connect with it, and it can evoke an emotion in them.” It is his honest approach to the music that resonates with many people across various communities. “I never try and write music with a preconceived intention. I suppose the process is dependent on pure energy and how I feel that day, week or month and also who I am collaborating with.”

Dancefloors come alive, spiritually and emotionally, as DJs drop tracks like “Nothing Can Break Us” and “Don Esquire”. It’s the second breath we are all grateful for as the unsuspecting Jullian Gomes track, in the DJ’s arsenal, catches us off guard, yet we surrender entirely to the aural journey it allows. His authentic “style within styles” makes his music so fresh and everlasting in South Africa. Jullian says, “I give each song its own identity.” What makes listening to his work so pleasurable is that you are allowed into his world, we see the journey as a music artist and as a human being. “I try and stay away from boxing myself in. We all need to evolve.” This is palpable in Jullian Gomes’ “Late Dreamer” album.

As South Africa’s music industry confidently defines itself and voices its capabilities to the greater world, Jullian Gomes believes that “we as a collective need to support each other and motivate each other through art for the benefit of our people.” He says, “the world is crazy enough, artists need to be the peace givers, the inspiration and the change that is needed.” This mindset is at the forefront of believing in ourselves and creating platforms for those who need a helping hand to showcase their storytelling through their preferred medium.

October 2019, saw the release of his sophomore album, “Slow Poison”. The album was received with warmth and gratitude by South Africa. The listener is captivated from the first instance in the opening track, “Darkness”. It’s a dance with melancholy and the beauty of solitude and self-discovery through the darkness. Jullian says, “I see my albums before they are made. In that image, I saw people being sucked into a world that wasn’t meant for them, but ultimately, they fought and inspired each other to get out and find paradise.” The collaborations on “Slow Poison” attribute to the applauded reception of the album, with the likes of Zaki Ibrahim, Tahir Jones, Martin Iverson and FKA Mash all harnessing their talent to present something tremendously beautiful. In terms of deciding who to collaborate with on “Slow Poison”, he says, “pure energy, if the artist had good energy, I was keen to collab.”

Along with the infinite groove that will fill dancefloors, Jullian Gomes hopes people will take the time to hear the message in the album. “I’m hoping this album saves someone’s life. If I can change people’s lives through art, my purpose is fulfilled.” When it comes to curating his sets that get House heads moving, he says, “I don’t prepare my sets, I just listen to a lot of music and more or less know where I want to go with it and then when I connect with the crowd, we ride together.”

Jullian Gomes continues his “Slow Poison” album tour. Sunday People, you will be blessed with a magical set at the We House Sundays 2-day Festival, on the 14-16 December, at Cloof Wine Estate. The weekend will see Jullian Gomes making his way back to one of his favourite events to play. When asked what he enjoys about the We House Sundays crowd, he says, “everything, amazing people, amazing spirits, who really care about House music and creating a positive vibe.”

Sunday People, you are in for a beautiful atmospheric moment with Jullian Gomes, the DJ, producer and storyteller!

Written By Mandy Alexander

Getting to know Iceland’s Intr0beatz

We House Sundays is proud to bring the Iceland native, Intr0beatz, to Cape Town’s shores. The Icelandic muso will grace the We House Sundays 2-day festival with his eclectic sound. Sunday People will get to experience what’s brewing in the land of glaciers and the Northern Lights. Find out what Intr0beatz is all about and what we can expect on the 14-16 December at Darling’s Cloof Wine Estate.

Arsaell Thor Ingvason aka Intr0beatz hails from Seltjarnarnes, located on the outskirts of Reykjavik. The music producer and DJ describes his neighbourhood as “very chilled with a bunch of kids to hang out with and a lot of corners to get in trouble at.” Intr0beatz’ appreciation for music is rooted in his upbringing. “My father is a musician, so music and studios have been in my life since day one.” He credits his father’s incredible record collection of jazz and fusion for his early exposure to essential artists.

The name Intr0beatz sure does make you wonder how it came to be significant to his persona. When asked how the name came about, he says, “Intr0 comes from my (not too long-lasting) graffiti days. Then I started making beats, so it became Intr0beatz.” His journey through music is a special one and signifies how we discover and create ourselves through various sounds. “I started to DJ when I was 12 years old, playing all aspects of 90s music”. I learned how to scratch around (the age of) 13.” Intr0beatz recalls his first 10 to 15 years consisting of solely producing Hip Hop. He applied the same techniques when he shifted to creating more upbeat music. The intrinsic creative says, “my identity is my name, and my name translates my journey throughout (as well as) my passion for different styles of music.”

The joys and pains of music have a way of healing and comforting, and it creates a safe space to explore and define yourself. Intr0beatz natural transition from Hip Hop to House further pronounces the universal sound and how we mature through music, taking and feeling what serves us in the various stages of our lives. “The change in sounds in Hip Hop and lyrical content wasn’t where I was anymore. So, there was a period where I had no idea if making music was something I wanted to do. But, then almost overnight, I started to love the sounds from the 90s dance music, from my childhood.” It led to Intr0beatz new love for making music. It was “just in another tempo.” He understands the importance of not getting too comfortable with the familiar, “it’s healthy to move out of the box, into something that is a challenge so you can grow as a musician but also as a human being.”

Intr0beatz’ sets always stir a welcoming playfulness in the listener. It’s this sound that will warm the souls of those in attendance on the weekend of We House Sundays festival. Each track production has a different inspiration behind it. “I make my music all based off a certain feeling I get when I sit down in my studio.” His inspiration to create music stems from a variety of artists and music he has listened to throughout the years. With tracks like “Fly Like Love” and “Trees Breez”, the groove is sure to go down swell on the dancefloor. For South Africans to listen live to an Icelandic producer and DJ is a treat, as it is not something that we encounter often. That makes Intr0beatz set at the WHS 2-day festival sought after.

Music is a portal to understand individuals and cultures without negatively emphasising our differences, instead, embracing the similarities and creating empathetic curiosity to understand those so far from our everyday experiences. How does the otherworldly environment of Iceland influence Intr0beatz work? You might be wondering. He says, “that is something I can’t describe. Winters in Iceland can be pretty hard, but that’s when I make my best tunes. So, I guess, it’s the isolation that affects my drive to make music.” His cheeky productions will get you in the mood for endless summer days surrounded with friends. Intr0beatz is familiar with SA’s local talent keeping our dancefloors pumping. He mentions Black Coffee, Kid Fonque, Zito Mowa and Kvrvbo. “There are definitely more artists that I need to know of.” No doubt that will be solved as SA’s local line-up will bring their A-game for the WHS shenanigans.

Intr0beatz cannot wait to touch down in SA and deliver his sound to you, eager Sunday People. “You can expect some soulful uptempo deep house grooves from different directions. I definitely will take the people on a journey through the sounds that I like.” From the man himself, “if you see me, come say hello!”

By Mandy Alexander

Sunday People

#SundayPeople: Keanon Michaels of Keanon’s Kitchen

This series, #SundayPeople, is an opportunity for us to celebrate the members of the We House Sundays community who are doing amazing things in their own worlds – with a strong focus on the community-minded and people involved in work with food, music and friends. This month we celebrate Keanon Michaels, the chef behind Keanon’s kitchen, and a man passionate about the positive power of surfing on youngsters.

After 15 years in the kitchens of the world, taking the lead from other chefs, earlier this year Keanon Micheals launched ‘Keanon’s Kitchen’ a multi-functional food service that offers almost anything you might need when you’re looking for food for an event. “I do all events involving food, I’m by no means limited to just 3 course dinners with wine pairings. Whether it’s a wedding, buffet, sushi, canapés, butler style service, tapas, braais, etc., I can do them all.”

Despite the very real challenges that any new business faces, including the cashflow/funding monster, Keanon has used his massive experience and the confidence he has built up over his career to transform his Toyota Tazz into a micro panel van and deliver unique, bespoke food service to his clients. His skill and professionalism has led to a special kind of popularity reserved for those with real passion for what they do and a good heart, leading to 5 appearances on SABC 3’s Expresso Show, cooking live. “The most rewarding experience has to be my launch event – 50 people for a 3 course dinner in Strandfontein Civic Centre. It was held on 22 April 2017. It was a different kind of pressure because usually I am the employee and not the employer. My team in both the front and back of house worked phenomenally, we got through it. Both the food and the service was amazing. The overwhelming feedback I got from all my guests made all the stress and pressure worth it.”

He’s not only passionate about food, but has acknowledged the positive impact surfing has had on him, and works hard to plough energy into making that impact felt with the youngsters in his local area, through the ‘9 Miles Project’, an NPO he describes as “aimed at empowering children from the informal settlement near Strandfontein.” He explains, “The project teaches them to surf, helps them with schoolwork and to be role models in their communities. One of my good surfer friends, Nigel Savel started this programme and in 3 years it has grown in strength with a 9 Miles Project starting in Elands Bay on the West Coast and in Cape St Francis in the Eastern Cape. I’m involved in the project because I know what surfing did for me as youngster growing up in Strandfontein. I was also faced with the same social elements these children are facing now and as a youngster, instead of getting involved in drugs or crime, I chose to surf with my friends and it played a big role in the man I am today.”

In thinking about food and culture and community, Keanon is of the mind that “Food tells a story.” He explains further that, “It shows where you’re from, where you have been and your heritage. Depending on your social and cultural background, the story varies from person to person.”

His loves aren’t limited to just food or surfing either. He’s hooked on house music too.
“The love I have for deep house music started at Club More in Loop Street in 1999. I loved it, it was different, way more sensual then – with the likes of Ryan Dent and Craig de Sousa setting the bar. ‘Fresh House Flavour Vol. 4’ really got me hooked on deep house. Then More closed, Sutra was the next deep house club. It continued with the ‘Foo Funk’ and ‘Deep Heat’ events which were legendary deep house parties. Then Deluxe opened and the likes of Clint Hill, Reagan Human, Leighton Moody, Lester Bachelor and Roy Block were my heroes. ‘Shake Your Pancreas’, ‘All Sold Out’ and ‘Funky Buddha’ were my favourite events. We House Sundays captures the essence and love I have for deep house. Leighton Moody kept deep house alive.”

Keanon’s signature project is ‘Taste The Passion’, a series of food experience events, where he brings the kitchen to your home and creates a 3-course meal with wine pairings. “Taste The Passion is where I can showcase my passion for food and wine, with all I’ve learnt in my travels and places I’ve worked in the last 15 years. I get to share that with people who have a passion for good food cooked in a unique way with techniques, textures and combinations, that sets my food apart from other chefs.”

In describing that uniqueness of the food he creates, Keanon lists his favourite ingredients as Rooibos, cumin, beetroot, citrus, chilli and spices. He also credits travelling with influencing his approach to food, “My travels to Asia were a lifetime dream. Thailand, China and Korea influenced my flavours and combinations; I love the freshness and heat of Asian cuisine. I am extremely proud of local Cape/South African dishes, flavours and textures.”

His biggest source of cooking inspiration is his mom, who had him cooking at 9 years old with limited rules aside from what was available in the cupboard and fridge, and his main food influence as his main mentor Chef Marcus Ree Taylor, “my former Head Chef at the Towers Club fine dining restaurant on the 19th floor of the Western Hotel in Cape Town. He taught me attention to detail, finesse and crucial techniques my cooking arsenal was lacking.”

Continuing with the trend of caring for future legions of young people, he shares that “Young aspiring chefs should be passion-driven about food and cooking – it sets the foundation for everything else. Learning is essential; it sets apart a cook from a chef. Constantly learning and improving your skill sets makes you indispensable and sets you apart everyone else in the kitchen.”

Content by – Platform Magazine