Tuesday 2021-01-26

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FULL STORY

CREATING A CULTURE

By Mdubasa | 2020-11-22

Can you briefly tell us about 2.0 and Drum Rhythm and how you came up with the idea of creating the WeAfro podcast?

2.0(Phephela ‘’Fantacy’’ Mdluli, Lindokuhle ‘Lil’D’ Dlamini) & Drum Rhythm (Kwakhe ‘ Dino’ Langwenya, Sihle ‘Popo’’ Nkosi ) are Dance Music Duo’s from Eswatini that focus mainly on Afro House.

The aim is to make the genre well known in the kingdom. It’s one of those genres that aren’t recognised, yet bring out a really great atmosphere on the dance floor internationally. Some of the reasons involved include bringing out the best to a number of talented producers not being recognised locally or internationally. We are trying to build a culture that will make every music lover add this genre as one of their favourite.

One day we decided to execute the plan into practice by joining heads as duos and have a podcast that will only focus on Afro House music where DJs will get a chance to record a mix of not less than 45mins and not more than an hour and play exclusive Afro House and also make sure they feature some of their craft which is why we include a tracklist in our artwork. The ongoing pandemic played a major role in this movement because everyone was at home, working and others requesting for DJ mixes on social media. We thought why not execute the plan at this point when everyone wants new sound, new projects etc.

What were your main objectives with this initiative and do you believe you have achieved them?

As we have mentioned that we had an aim of putting the genre out there and make people understand and accept the sound we listen to.

Your podcast has featured quite a number of local DJs. How has the reception been from the DJs and listeners?

Massive. It makes us proud to receive a thumbs up from people that have been in the industry for quite sometime for the work that we put in. Yes, we do not have a lot of Afro House DJs/producers in the Kingdom but when we feature those that we have, the quality that they deliver makes it sound so international and makes us proud of how people take the genre seriously.

Our listeners have been motivational in their feedback. We were shocked and excited to learn that someone out there has all 32 mixes of the DJs we’ve hosted so far in a flash drive in their car and made us realise that people actually feel the same way we feel about this genre.

You have great experience in the deejaying field, what do you look for in terms of the mixes you publish on

your podcast.

We actually want DJs to deliver as much quality as possible. This includes exclusive music, their best work that is yet to be released or is released and the consistency and progress in the mixes that they submit. We want someone that will make mixes as if they were in front of a crowd, playing for a crowd in peak hours and deliver their best set and make our listeners want more out of them. In that way, the very same DJ will definitely get a following from listeners which is why we try by all means to tag our guest DJs in our posts and also include their social media handles in their bio.

What do you think of the podcasting scene in the Kingdom?

We think this is a great way of promoting new music and sound to music lovers. As a music lover, you never want to hear one and the same thing over and over again, you always want change. And producers want different inspiration from different sounds, and to achieve that, you need to listen to new sound and get tips on how to drop a sound that will make you different/versatile to your listeners. In that way, you get to work with different people in the industry and go places.

In a nutshell, well organised and planned podcasts are a great initiative especially for a country like ours where there’s culture for music and a lot of people that love music with a passion.

What are the challenges of running such a platform?

The availability of Afro House DJs in the kingdom. Initially, the plan was to give priority to our local brothers and sisters more than we give international guests. And it’s easy to engage those international DJs because some are flexible on social media DMs, some even engage us to get featured in the podcast while others respond to our emails as quickly as possible.

 Locally, that’s very scarce because our fellow countrymen believe that we should engage them yet we do not know them.

Others are out there, and we do not know them, and they do not engage us to get featured in the podcast. We once received a comment from someone that reads “inkinga nifaka bangani benu kuphela kule podcast tsine asinikwa litfuba”.

At that time we don’t even know that person is actually a Afro House DJ/producer, let alone engaged us since we always emphasise DJs to submit their work on our DMs and email to feature their music/mixes.

What do you think is the potential of it?

International standards, where we get to host the big names in the Afro House music industry which will definitely draw a following/listeners to our podcast. We want to make sure we are in the picture when someone thinks of a podcast and refers to us for the efforts we put in.

How do you think podcasting can play a role in improving the standard of house music in the kingdom?

It creates a culture, podcasting is one way of keeping in touch with your fans and it can act as a way of educating them about the music you play or produce.

What other projects are you looking into venturing to?

We are venturing into hosting radio shows where we can get a slot on radio and showcase some of the recorded mixes and get to interview some of our guest DJs, especially locally.

Furthermore, we are working on our productions as duos, and when we are ready, we will get to release our projects as duos. People should be on the lookout.

However, we are hoping the government extends the number of hours for people that host outdoor shows since we want to host a launch show for the podcast and a series of other events under the name and feature some local and international acts. So we hope the issue of border gates and event hours is sorted out and we are able to go back to the normal way of things.

We are also a little bit involved in clothing brands but we only do that on orders from our followers.

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