“Akabongi” ft. Spoek Mathambo is the opening track of Daniel Haaksman´s acclaimed “African Fabrics” album and since its original release, has become a secret club hit.
Now released as a single including three new versions, “Akabongi” (Zulu for “no gratitude”) is featuring the shining voice of South African superstar Spoek Mathambo. Spoek perfectly reinterpretes the legendary 1980s song by South African mbaqanga heroes The Soul Brothers, adding contemporaneity with a cool freestyle rap . The magnificient guitar play by Colombia´s Bulldozer adds up to a tropical, Zoukous resembling vibe that puts sunshine and joy onto every dancefloor.
The original version is supplemented with an extended mix plus a club ready Afro house remix by South Africa´s jack of all trades, Mo Laudi. To round up the tropical feeling, Lithunia´s Boyfriend remade “Akabongi” in dembow fashion.
Play it out loud and make sure that “Akabongi” will become the summer club anthem of 2016!
DJ support by Munchi, Nina Las Vegas, Mumdance, JSTJR, Shir Khan, Mixhell, Ben Mono, Roundtable Knights, Alma Negra and many more!
Alluding the famous Rene? Magritte painting “Ceci n´est pas une pipe” (“This is not a pipe”), the British- Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare declared in 2011: “A picture of a pipe isn´t necessarily a pipe, an image of “African Fabric” isn´t necessarily authentically (and wholly) African”. In his artistic work, in which he drapes African fabrics on Victorian figures, Yinka Shonibare reflects on colonialism and post-colonialism. After all, the colorful, pattern-rich cloths which are commonly referred to as “African Fabrics” and can be found on flea and cloth markets, mostly are not “African” in its origin, but rather artifiacts of a complex political and economical interplay between African, Europa and the world. Called “African Fabrics” or “Dutch Wax” these cloths emenate mostly from Holland, lately from China.
The story of the “African Fabrics” can also be applied to the perception and the image building of music from Africa. Here, one can ask: What kind of sounds are associated with the African continent? How does Africa sound in the 21st century? What´s “African” music in the age of digital media and a frenzied globalization? The Berlin DJ, producer and label owner Daniel Haaksman deals with answers in his album “African Fabrics”. Because many of today´s urban music styles which come via the internet today from Africa to Europe have nothing more to do with what we previously imagined as “African Music”. In 2016 it should be clear: The popular cliché of Nigerian Afrobeat or drumming communities need an urgent update. Africa has long since arrived in the digital age, music videos from Africa with millions of plays on Youtube or tracks with tens of thousands of clicks on SoundCloud are emblematic of the long practiced, local African reinterpretations of global circulating signs of pop culture.
For more than ten years, Daniel Haaksman released urban Sounds from Brasil, his compilations and releases on his label Man Recordings created the genre-term “baile funk”, now used internationally. In 2012, he travelled for a DJ appearance for the first time to Angola and plunged into the world of Kuduro, that specific Angolan high-speed dance style that originated in the late 1980s from hybridization of Euro house, US rap and Angolan semba. On another trip through the former Portuguese speaking colony Mozambique, as well as numerous visits to Lisbon, Daniel encountered various musical concepts for the future that are far from the nostalgic look of pop and club music in Europe, the UK and the US these days.
For the eleven tracks on “African Fabrics” Daniel Haaksman synthesized internet and streeet market finds with current bass music styles of the northern hemisphere. “Ceci n´est past l´Afrique”, as the album is not about the one-on-one mirroring of current sounds from Africa. It´s not about authenticity either. As with the African fabrics from Holland it´s about transcontinental cultural dialogues and their artistic interpretations. The results are fueled by the global resonant space named internet in which genre confuse and new musical artifacts emerge. Yes, on “African Fabrics” we hear afro footwork, minimal marimba house, a two-step bass track paired with a kalimba, or a regional Angolan language mounted on a futurist beat. Haaksman is playing with the characters, literally. The word “Fabrics” in the English language not only means “materials” but also “structures” or “textures” – and Daniel is putting big, colourful splashes of sound onto them.
“African Fabrics” begins with “Akabongi”, a new version of a pop hit by South African group The Soul Brothers which Haaksman recorded with legendary South African rapper Spoek Mathambo in Zulu. “Sembène” pays a bass-heavy Congo funk hommage to Senegalese writer and filmmaker Ousmae Sembène whose films represent a great source of inspiration for Daniel. “Kaggua” ft. Tshila is a rap with Ugandan singer Tshila in the Ugandan Luganda langugae about fun at a party. “Rename The Streets” and the accompanying music video focuses on the colonial history of Germany. The video shows two dancers which transform street signs in Berlin´s “African Quarter” bearing names of questionable colonial figures.
“Sabado” features the great Colombian champeta guitarist Bulldozer, which echoes West African music influences that are still very dominant in todays Colombian music. “Black Coffee” is a track with the Mozambican rapper Dama Do Bling over probably the most popular African plant that is consumed worldwide – coffee! The Portuguese-Angolan kuduro-punk band Throes + The Shine is guest on “Xinguila” and combines the energy of punk with the bass and rap flow of Kuduro music. “Aho” takes the listener to a street choir in Harare (Zimbabwe) and adds a footwork groove from Chicago to it. “Afrika” is an amazing song with the inventor of Angolan high-speed dance genre Kuduro, Tony Amado, and the Mozambican singer Alcindah Guerane that is sung in Kimbunde (a regional Angolan language) about the history of Africa the time of slavery to the present, mounted on a beat that eclipses a production of Timbaland. “Raindrops” is a Berlin electronica interpretation of a Zimbabwean mbira song. And finally, “Querido”, again with Bulldozer on guitar, recapping the transatlantic and global music connections.
The eleven songs of “African Fabrics” are visually illustrated by German artist Tobias Rehberger. For years Rehberger has artistically reflected on the relationship between patterns, sculpture and space. For the cover artwork, Rehberger interpreted patterns of “African Fabrics”, abstracted their colours and shapes, creating a visual counterpart to the musical approach and the fresh new sound of Daniel Haaksman.
Did you ever wondered how a Steve Reich minimalist kalimba composition could sound in combination with a heavy sub bass and a two step influenced rhythm? Well, Daniel Haaksman serves the answer: His new single “Rename The Streets” perfectly combines the best of classic minimalism with the bass love of today, the kalimba is rooting the track somewhere in Africa, the sound of the sub bass connects it with Europe and the Carribbean.
The great thing about this beautiful track: You can dance to it, at the same time it raises political awareness. The music video to “Rename The Streets” is adressing the demand for street name changes in Berlin´s colonial quarter, the so called “Afrikanisches Viertel”. In the video, two pole-dancers transform street signs bearing the names of questionable colonial figueres with their moves. Yes, call “Rename The Streets” funky postcolonialism!
The single comes with a DJ friendly extended mix and two remixes. The first remix is by Lisbon´s Kuduro whizkid and Afro don of the hour Dotorado, whose “African Scream” track was considered by many DJs one of the major club tracks of 2015. The second remix by South Africa´s DJ Spoko – the inventor of “Bacardi House”, which laid the foundation to the global success to DJ Mujava´s “Township Funk”. The artwork is by German artist and Venice Biennale 2009 golden lion winner Tobias Rehberger.
“Rename The Streets” is the first single from the upcoming Daniel Haaksman “African Fabrics” album which is scheduled for a late February 2016 release.
Early DJ support by Duke Dumont, Feadz, Seiji, Sinden, Toy Selectah, Roundtable Knights, Flexican, Philippe Cohen-Solal/Gotan Project, and many more!
Viní´s debut “Coringa” EP on Man Recordings, which was released in last July, propelled the 22-year old producer from São Paulo to international attention. He is now considered one of the big new talents of the new wave of baile funk where São Paulo has become the new innovation-hub, in which baile funk´s trademark rhtyhm is combined with bass music styles from across the world. In the meantime, Viní had a slot on Branko´s recent São Paulo Boiler Room session and a release in the prestigious Upper Cuts series on Enchufada followed.
And now there´s the “Coringa Remix” EP which connects with Vinís kaleidoscopic approach to low end sounds. The opening remix of Viní´s “Vai” comes from Kking Kong of Lisbon, who shaped the the original track to a twerked dembow banger. Teenage producer Sydney from Rio De Janeiro, an artist from Omulu´s Arrastão label, goes back to baile funk´s legendary Tamborzão rhythm in his version of “Bandida Arlequina”. São Paulo´s Sants, one of the megacity´s hottest names in bass – he has already released his abstract sound science on labels such as London´s Trapdoor – strips down Viní´s “Agente Do Caos” to the bare essentials. Call it minimal funk! The EP gets finally rounded up by Flying Buff´s rework of “Coringa”. Flying Buff are also from São Paulo and represent the more big staged trap sound.
With the “Coringa Remix” EP Viní once more displays the future sound of Brazilian and lusophone bass music!
DJ support by Feadz, Branko, Daniel Haaksman, Poirier, Peter Kruder, Toy Selectah and many more!
Ten years in the world of dance music is like a century in real life. Dancefloor trends come and go in fast pace and so do record labels, especially in times of social media platforms such as Soundcloud through which artists can build world careers without having a record deal. Nevertheless, record labels still serve as compasses, followed by listeners surfing on the giant music ocean of MP3s . Selecting only the very best music, accompanying a release with proper designs, picking remixes, helping in creating a music video and marketing ideas, labels are not only orientation tools but still important partners in artists careers.
Man Recordings has proven to be a record label in the classic sense. It has picked hot new producers when they were hardly known, accompanied them while riping to become real artists and guided numerous projects to outstanding performances leading to globally known club anthems and pop hits.
On Man Recordings it was e.g. Diplo that released his first international remix in 2005. Crookers broke on Man Recordings internationally with their “Funk Mundial” debut and shortly after released their “Day N´Night” world-hit. Schlachthofbronx had their first internationally recognised single, “Ayoba” ft. the then unknown MC couple Spoek Mathambo + Gnucci. Junior Blender, one half of Hamburg´s So Shifty, which have been close to Man Rec for years, today co-produces Major Lazer. Last but not least Madonna got inspired for her “L.O.V.E. Madonna” song by the Man Recordings released hit “L.O.V.E. Banana” by João Brasil ft. Lovefoxxx. The list of anecdotes and ties of underground talent raised on Man Recordings and their influence and effects on global bass and international pop superstardom is long and continuing.
Now Man Recordings celebrates ten years of releasing amazing transnational club music with some of the best tracks from its catalogue. The compilation “Best Of Man Recordings – Celebrating 10 Years 2005-2015″ includes some of the best and sucessful tracks and remixes by artists such as Diplo, Crookers, Riva Starr, Seiji, Lovefoxxx, Schlachthfobronx, Seiji, Edu K and Man Recordings label boss Daniel Haaksman himself amongst others. It´s a tiny review of the more than eighty releases (and more than 350 tracks) released on Man Recordings over the stretch of a decade.
To accompany the celebration of the label´s ten year anniversary, we´ll feature various stories on our blog surrounding the ten years in business, featuring photos, anecdotes, tracks and videos of our label´s joyful and long musical journey. In the meantime, listen to the compilation and buy it from these fine shops below!