Mozambican-Canadian Producer Samito Shares 'Tiku La Hina'

Mozambican-Canadian singer-songwriter and producer Samito shares 'Tiku La Hina,' the lead single from his afro-electro debut album 'Xico-Xico'.

Montreal-based, Mozambican singer-songwriter and producer Samito is on a mission to "bring groove into a new age, an age where new afro aesthetics drive the music" with his debut album Xico-xico. Samito grew up in Maputo and Cape Town, where he was heavily influenced by the South African-bred shangaan disco style. He recently produced six tracks on Congolese-Canadian singer Pierre Kwenders' Juno Awards-nominated album Le Dernier Empereur Bantou, all of which showcase Samito's sonic blend of crisp electronic production and catchy lyrics sung in French, English and Portuguese. With his lead track "Tiku La Hina," Samito pairs swift, tempo-shifting beatwork with sliced-up vocal samples. Listen to Samito's "Tiku La Hina" and check out our interview with the budding singer-songwriter-producer below.

Okayafrica: How would you describe your sound and how does it incorporate your Mozambican origins and time in Cape Town?

Samito: I see my sound as a bridge between music that “I am” and music that “I like.” Growing up in the port city of Maputo I saw all sorts of people come and go. That inspired me to leave in search of a sound and when I landed in Cape Town indie acts like mood phase 5ive, Godessa, Tumi and The Volume, Skwatta Kamp and fellow Mozambicans 340 ml were at the top of South Africa's music game. So, Cape Town was a perfect trampoline to Montreal.

OKA: Who are your main musical influences?

Samito: Shangaan music is big in my life (Obed Ngobeni, Thomas Chauke, etc.) but I also love Kanye, Phyno, Imogen Heap, Stromae and I'm currently crazy about this track by pH. Shangaan power.

OKA: Tell us about about the background of "Tiku La Hina."

Samito: I recorded the main vocal sample and it was originally going to be on a collaborative album with producer Ivan Duran but it didn't and when I picked it up Skrillex's track "Summit (Feat. Eli Goulding)" was in my ear. So I put it through Ableton, sliced it to a MIDI track, re-pitched it and built a whole new track. The women singers have a unique vocal sound associated with Tufo music and dance from northern Mozambique.

OKA: You've worked with fellow Montreal-resident Pierre Kwenders, do you find Montreal and Quebec have a growing afro-electronic scene?

Samito: Definitely. What has been great is that both main and non-mainstream local media have embraced the new afro aesthetics. And having traditionally been the breeding ground for independent music, Montreal seems to be adopting this new afro-electronic sound.



This Compilation Shines a Light On East African Underground Music

We talk to a few of the artists featured on the Music For the Eagles compilation from Uganda's Nyege Nyege.

Nyege Nyege, a label in Kampala, Uganda is channelling the confidence brimming over a whole continent. Africa is no longer the future. For dance music, its time is right now.

Music For the Eagles is a compilation released in conjunction with Soundcloud to showcase the best new acts that East Africa has to offer outside the mainstream. A new wave of artists firmly blasting non-conformist energy for you to spasm to. Music that takes you places. Otim Alpha's high BPM wedding frenzy of incessant rasping vocals accompanied by feverous violin will have you clawing the walls to oblivion. Anti Vairas' dancehall from a battleship with super galactic intentions doesn't even break a sweat as it ruins you. FLO's beautiful sirens call, is a skittish and detuned nursery rhyme that hints at a yearning for love but reveals something far more unnerving. Ecko Bazz's tough spiralling vocal over sub-bass and devil trap energy is an anthem that can only be bewailed. And Kidane Fighter's tune is more trance-like prayer. These are only some of the highlights for you to shake it out to.

We got to chat with a few of the artists featured on the Music For the Eagles compilation as they took a break from the studio below.

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