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Krizbeatz. Photography: Babajide Osho

Krizbeatz Is Nigeria's 'King of New Wave'

"I created a new African music sub-genre called 'Afro Dance Music,'" the young producer tells us in an exclusive interview.

Krizbeatz is the Nigerian beat maker renowned for producing "Pana," one of the biggest afrobeats tracks of 2016 and a song that sparked the new Pon Pon sound.

The "King of New Wave" has now taken his name to new heights with the release of his debut album, ADM ( Afro Dance Music) in November. With a track list featuring African heavyweights like Davido, Sauti Sol, Yemi Alade, Tekno and DJ Tira, the album is a plethora of riches.

The star studded record is an invitation to delve deeper into his distinctive sound, which he describes to be a fusion of afrobeats and electronic dance music.


At only 23-years-old, Krizbeatz has already been elevated to super producer status and you can surely count on him to give us more cuts of his club friendly afro-dance music soon.

Read our conversation with Krizbeatz below.

Photography: Babajide Osho.

Tell us a bit about yourself and how your journey as a music producer began.

I grew up with an overwhelming passion for music and sound. My first love was writing my own songs and trying to perform my own songs, then production and sound creation. After my first degree in Linguistics at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, I travelled to SAE, South Africa to study Music Technology. I decided to be a music producer—and a game-changing musician—based on the exposure I got studying music.

You just turned 23 but you're already working with the biggest stars in Africa like Davido, Yemi Alade, and Sauti Sol amongst others. How does that feel?

To be honest I never thought how would grow big in the industry within a very short period of time, but I was prepared and it feels great and fulfilling even though I still want to conquer the world.

Compared to a lot of music coming out of Nigeria, yours definitely has a unique sound. How would you describe it in your own words?

In order to get global acceptance of my sound, I sort of created a new African music sub-genre called "Afro Dance Music." It's the fusion of Afrobeats and Electronic Dance Music. And so far the acceptance has been overwhelming, that's the current African sound everyone wants to reckon with both locally and internationally.

Songs like "Pana" have greatly influenced the trendy Pon Pon sound that's been dominating Nigerian airwaves. In your opinion, what elements of that sound have made it so well-received?

Like I said earlier, its Afro Dance Music (ADM). Everybody loves new stuff especially when its good, ADM makes it easy for global acceptance and penetration.

You call yourself "The King of New Wave", what's the reason behind that title?

The Afro Dance Music, or Pon Pon sound like you said, is the African "new wave" and I champion the movement, so that makes me the King of New Wave.

Your album Afro Dance Music dropped in November; what was the inspiration behind the album?

After the success of "Pana," I see everybody jumping on my kind of sound and style, which is a good thing inspiring a lot of people, especially people I grew looking up to and listening to. So. I just thought it's smart I own the course, and I decided to put out a body of work that defines the sound, I hope generations to come will reckon with my legacy, like Fela and Afrobeat.

Photography: Babajide Osho

How do you feel about the way afrobeats is currently going global?

I am very excited, especially being a front runner as a music producer. The opportunities are limitless.

What pressures do you face now that you're one of the hottest producers in Nigeria right now?

No pressures, as far as am concerned, I have nothing to prove, am not trying to brag, within a short period of time everybody has acknowledged my talent and gift, I am one of the best on the continent. I just want to get better every day, get my business right, inspire people positively and leave a good legacy for generations to come.

What advice can you give other young African producers on the grind right now?

Be yourself, be creative and take your craft and business very serious.

What can we expect from Krizbeatz in 2018?

Watch out for hit songs from major artistes across Africa; more videos from my debut album, ADM, and I am writing a book and shooting a movie and most likely my sophomore album.

Krizbeatz' latest album 'ADM (Afro Dance Music)' is available now.

Photography: Babajide Osho

Art
Artwork: Barthélémy Toguo Lockdown Selfportrait 10, 2020. Courtesy Galerie Lelong & Co

1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair Goes to Paris in 2021

The longstanding celebration of African art will be hosted by Parisian hot spot Christie's for the first time ever.

In admittedly unideal circumstances, 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair will be touching French soil in 2021. The internationally celebrated art fair devoted to contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora will be hosted in Paris, France from January 20 - 23. With COVID-19 still having its way around the globe, finding new ways to connect is what it's all about and 1-54 is certainly taking the innovative steps to keep African art alive and well.
In partnership with Christie's, the in-person exhibits will take place at the auction house's city HQ at Avenue Matignon, while 20 international exhibitors will be featured online at Christies.com. And the fun doesn't stop there as the collaboration has brought in new ways to admire the talent from participating galleries from across Africa and Europe. The fair's multi-disciplinary program of talks, screenings, performances, workshops, and readings are set to excite and entice revelers.

Artwork: Delphine Desane Deep Sorrow, 2020. Courtesy Luce Gallery


The tech dependant program, curated by Le 18, a multi-disciplinary art space in Marrakech medina, will see events take place during the Parisian run fair, followed by more throughout February.
This year's 1-54 online will be accessible to global visitors virtually, following the success of the 2019's fair in New York City and London in 2020. In the wake of COVID-19 related regulations and public guidelines, 1-54 in collaboration with Christie's Paris is in compliance with all national regulations, strict sanitary measures, and security.

Artwork: Cristiano Mongovo Murmurantes Acrilico Sobre Tela 190x200cm 2019


1-54 founding director Touria El Glaoui commented, "Whilst we're sad not to be able to go ahead with the fourth edition of 1-54 Marrakech in February as hoped, we are incredibly excited to have the opportunity to be in Paris this January with our first-ever fair on French soil thanks to our dedicated partners Christie's. 1-54's vision has always been to promote vibrant and dynamic contemporary art from a diverse set of African perspectives and bring it to new audiences, and what better way of doing so than to launch an edition somewhere completely new. Thanks to the special Season of African Culture in France, 2021 is already set to be a great year for African art in the country so we are excited to be playing our part and look forward, all being well, to welcoming our French friends to Christie's and many more from around the world to our online fair in January."

Julien Pradels, General Director of Christie's France, said, "Christie's is delighted to announce our second collaboration with 1-54, the Contemporary African Art Fair, following a successful edition in London this October. Paris, with its strong links to the continent, is a perfect place for such a project and the additional context of the delayed Saison Africa 2020 makes this partnership all the more special. We hope this collaboration will prove a meaningful platform for the vibrant African art scene and we are confident that collectors will be as enthusiastic to see the works presented, as we are."


Artwork: Kwesi Botchway Metamorphose in July, 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery 1957


Here's a list of participating galleries to be on the lookout for:

Galleries

31 PROJECT (Paris, France)
50 Golborne (London, United Kingdom)
Dominique Fiat (Paris, France)
Galerie 127 (Marrakech, Morocco)
Galerie Anne de Villepoix (Paris, France)
Galerie Cécile Fakhoury (Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire/ Dakar, Senegal)
Galerie Eric Dupont (Paris, France)
Galerie Lelong & Co. (Paris, France / New York, USA)
Galerie Nathalie Obadia (Paris, France / Brussels, Belgium)
Galleria Continua (Beijing, China / Havana, Cuba / Les Moulins, France / San Gimignano, Italy / Rome, Italy)
Gallery 1957 (Accra, Ghana / London, United Kingdom)
Loft Art Gallery (Casablanca, Morocco)

Luce Gallery (Turin, Italy)
MAGNIN-A (Paris, France)
Nil Gallery (Paris, France)
POLARTICS (Lagos, Nigeria)
SEPTIEME Gallery (Paris, France)
This is Not a White Cube (Luanda, Angola) THK Gallery (Cape Town, South Africa) Wilde (Geneva, Switzerland)

For more info visit 1-54

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