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A Bootleg 'Swahili Trap' Remix Of Ibeyi From Kenyan Producer Ukweli

Nairobi-based producer Ukweli drops a booming unofficial remix of Ibeyi's live performance of "Ibeyi (Outro)" for Okay Acoustic.


Photo by Oluwaseye.

Newcomer Nairobi-based producer and visual artist Ukweli recently hit up our submissions e-mail with "Bejila," a track that lays down Ibeyi's soothing "Ibeyi (Outro)" a capella over booming, distorted kick drums. The unofficial remix from the Kenyan beatmaker actually takes the live audio from the French-Cuban twin sisters Okay Acoustic performance in Central Park and samples it for his self-coined 'Swahili Trap' reworking, "a new genre of music... that draws its influence from traditional African music with a modern electronic sound," Ukweli explains. "I'm a huge fan of Ibeyi, I watched their interview on Okayafrica, where they did a live rendition of their outro off the Ibeyi album and I was inspired to make something groovy. Much love to Ibeyi and Okayafrica." Stream Ukweli's bootleg "Ibeyi (Outro)" remix below.

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(Youtube)

7 Gengetone Acts You Need to Check Out

The streets speak gengetone: Kenya's gengetone sound is reverberating across East Africa and the world, get to know its main purveyors.

Sailors' "Wamlambez!"Wamlambez!" which roughly translates to "those who lick," is the cry the reverberated round the world, pushing the gengetone sound to the global stage. The response "wamnyonyez" roughly translates to "those who suck" and that should tell you all you need to know about the genre.

Known for its lewd lyrics and repetitive (often call and response) hooks, gengetone makes no apologies for belonging to the streets. First of all, most artists that create gengetone are grouped into bands with a few outliers like Zzero Sufuri riding solo. The songs themselves often feature a multiplicity of voices with screams and crowds coming through as ad libs, adding to this idea that this is definitely "outside" music.

Listening to Odi wa Muranga play with his vocal on the track "Thao" it's easy to think that this is the first, but gengetone fits snuggly in a history of sheng rap based on the kapuka style beat. Kapuka is onomatopoeically named, the beats have that repetitive drum-hat-drum skip that sounds like pu-ka-pu-ka-pu. Artists like Nonini were asking women to come over using this riff long before Ochungulo family told them to stay home if they aren't willing to give it up.

Here's seven gengetone groups worth listening to.

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