With an amazing number of quality new releases in 2020 from Nairobi and Kenyan artists, I had to create a new radio show, offering a much needed platform for alternative and independent music.
The NAIROBI CONNECT is aired on Manchester’s REFORM RADIO on the last Tuesday of the month, 11pm - 1am BST / 1am - 3am EST, and then on my Soundcloud thereafter. In my 3rd Episode, aired on 28th August, I take up the first hour of the show with my recent Nairobi
discoveries; followed by an hour long set by Kenyan House Music DJ and Producer IMRAN
I open the show, as seems to have become the habit, with a track from Ambient and Electronica pioneer KMRU. Although he may not be so well known within Kenya, KMRU is certainly turning heads in the global underground scene with regular features on international record labels and publications. The track chosen is a collaboration hosted by Reform Radio, with UK Producer CONTOURS, who also collaborates on my upcoming release on ADA Records! Hold tight for more info…
After the cerebral rhythms of the opening track, I delve into a mix of strictly Kenyan music released from within the last 12 months. I kick off at 65 BPM and end up at 130 BPM, gradually increasing the pace of the tracks, setting the tone for Imran’s House Mix.
And so, its time to expose the wealth of conscious Trip Hop that has taken hold of producers and MCs in Nairobi. Each month, there are new drops exploring sample use and fire beats, with conscious lyrics narrating Nairobi life in Sheng and English. Watch out for tracks by TG.BLK, KILIHIPPIE, MR LU. with LUKORITO and Nairobi’s answer to Mos Def - TRABOLEE; all who have. released some amazing new projects during Lockdown.
As one of my more uplifting mixes, this one doesn’t dig deep into the raw sounds of SHRAP and GENGETONE, instead I decided to keep it positive and warm with afro tracks by SHAPPAMAN with ORIGINAL ADDI and the amazing STEPH THE RAPPER designed to amp up a pre-game, helped by a couple of flips from BASTHMA, whose sound is much more restrained these days.
The last fifteen minutes offers some faster paced tracks designed for the dance-floor by KERBY, MASTA LUMINARY and the amazing electro punk of KABOCHI. Whilst Urban Music is so prominent in Nairobi, there is certainly a deep love for Electronic Music, and a very real charge by producers to interpret Nairobi in this global language.
Soon its time for the listener to slip into a seductive mix from my guest DJ IMRAN MWANGI, who features four of his own tracks. The mix is deep minimal and certainly sexy, conjuring up fond memories of losing it on a packed dance-floor at Muze Club!
Thanks for all the support of the show, please check the artists on the track-list, show them some love and lock in for the next NAIROBI CONNECT.