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Michael Brun. Photo: Steve Baboun.

Michael Brun Is Pushing the New Sounds of Haiti

Exclusive interview: we catch up with the DJ & producer to talk about his J Balvin collaboration for the World Cup, working with Mr Eazi and how he's promoting Haiti's contemporary sounds.

Michael Brun is here to make sure Haiti is getting the credit and recognition it deserves.

Born in Port-au-Prince, the producer, DJ, and artist wants to prove Haitian music's long-lasting influence across the globe.

Since he was a little kid, Brun always had a strong desire to help his country, as was evidenced by his response to Trump's comments calling Haiti a "shithole" earlier this year. In fact, he's felt this strong desire and responsibility from birth. Coming from a good family and having a chance to get a good education, his parents would always tell him, "you have to be able to help others." Eventually, he enrolled at Davidson College on a full ride, where he was pre-med as a Bio major. He thought being a doctor was a way to fulfill that.

When music came calling, it was a no-brainer. Taking a leave of absence, Michael took a leap of faith and decided to pursue DJing and producing full-time. Now, at just 25 years old, Michael is actively (and humbly) living out his dream on a daily basis, giving back to his country by fusing the worlds of dance music and Haitian music into one global phenomenon.

OkayAfrica caught up with Brun ahead of his sold-out show at The Forum in Los Angeles, opening for Latin pop star J Balvin.

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Michael Brun's Zouk & Konpa Starter Kit Playlist Is a Must-Listen

Michael Brun picks a fire selection of new and classic tracks from Haiti, Guadeloupe and the Caribbean exclusively for OkayAfrica.

Michael Brun is on a mission to push a contemporary Haitian sound forward through his music, while waving its iconic flag proudly.

That can't happen without knowing one's music history. The Haitian-born artist touched base with OkayAfrica to give us an introduction to the zouk and konpa tracks that laid the foundation of the fresh sounds coming from that genre out of Haiti, Guadeloupe and across the Caribbean.

Brun also dropped a funky, new single featuring Brooklyn-based Nigerian artist Kah-Lo: "Spice." You can take a listen here.

Dig into our latest Artist Playlist—Michael Brun's Afro-Caribbean: Zouk & Konpa Starter Kit—on our Spotify and Apple Music channels below.

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Photo still via YouTube.

Michael Brun & Shirazee's Acoustic Version of 'Soweto' Will Soothe Your Thursday

Premiering on OkayAfrica, watch the dynamic duo croon a love letter to the South African city.

Haitian-born artist Michael Brun links up with Beninese Afrosoul artist Shirazee for an acoustic version of their melodic house hit, "Soweto."

This stripped down version was recorded in Brun's new home of Brooklyn, giving us a smooth, soulful rhythmic cut with a languid, late-afternoon vibe. "Soweto" is Shirazee's love letter to a city that he spent a lot of time in growing up—a raspy serenade to a city whose beat enchanted him.

Take a look below.

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