We live in an incredible time for music and culture. We have an infinite amount of information at our fingertips. It gives us the opportunity to be influenced by cultures and societies oceans away. It allows us to experience communities outside of our own that otherwise would have stayed foreign.
Electronic Music is one of those things that spans the globe transforming, evolving and becoming something completely unique to the roots of each respective culture.
After a summer of traveling from festival to festival in the States and Canada and being able to experience music and culture from all over the world in one place discovering more amazing artists from around the world was inevitable. Here are some old favorites and some of the new found gems from around the world.
Electronic music in Cuba in something that is recently budding and proof that if you truly desire something, with drive, ambition and a whole lotta passion you can make it happen. DJ Jigüe is a perfect example of just that.
He is a Cuban producer who has to go to some pretty serious lengths to be able to create his music. Becoming a producer takes a special kind of personal drive and with Cuba not having reliable internet access that increases tenfold. Until only a few years ago, getting online was close to impossible for the average person.
The country has 30% internet penetration and the prime time hours for a quality connection for him is 4am, when there are fewer people online slowing down the connection, but that is only if you have been lucky enough to purchase a Wi-Fi card which go quickly and run out often.
If getting online wasn’t difficult enough, purchasing a computer in a place where the average income is about $26/month and it was illegal to own one until 2008 makes for a few more hoops to have to jump through to get to a place to be able to begin creating music.
DJ Jigüe runs the first independent hip hop imprint in Cuba called Guampara Music, and works when he can as an audiovisual producer for visiting filmmakers. Regardless of the country’s adversities the electronic music scene is thriving and well. Here are some examples of Cuba’s Electronic music scene.
With the internet becoming increasingly more available the recent uprising of a music festival like only Cuba can, Manana the unique sound and experience that these artists bring will only continue to grow in size, experience and passion.
Parties like Polygon, an event spread mostly by word of mouth and held in abandoned buildings and alike where the location isn’t disclosed until just before with flyers that are works of art in themselves, Prague has blossomed and some amazing Electronic artists are budding from the culture. These are two intriguing artists that you will love. Dripping dark techno with a psychedelic trance twist.
Originally from London, now a resident of Berlin, Sigha’s sound is all his own. Pulling inspiration from visual artists like Sir John Everett Millais’, Ophelia, a sculpture by Cornelia Parker called Mass (Colder Darker Matter), and Kohei Yoshiyuki Untitled, Plate 18, his music has reflects the beautiful sadness and unique rawness that these artists embody.
For someone who strives to be an individual of the world and experience as many different cultures, meet as many people and travel to as many places as possible in their lifetime, hearing about what is happening on a Croatian Island will be extremely exciting. Mixing breathtaking new adventures and intriguing new music is a draw all in its own, add the fact that this takes place on its very own island, once you make it there you may never leave.
People are able to stay for as long as they like, from a few days to a few weeks. Utilizing the infrastructure already on the island and being conscious of maintaining the health and wealth of the land that it is on; those who are involved in curating this year round event are going to great lengths to make sure that it is not damaged and the environment and experience is more than a party. Their goal is to have a positive impact on the community around them and to create a place of sustainability and self-awareness. Obonjan Island is a gem among outlets of musical escape.
Currently touring with Proxy on the Bass Addicts Tour through Canada and the U.S., HAEZER has exceeded even his own expectations. Playing alongside artists like Flosstradamus, Major Lazor, touring Europe and now in America, his bass laden Electronic music has caught the attention of many.
Electronic heavy hitter Sibot started out in hip hop in a crew called Max Normal with Waddy Jones, or as most people probably know him Ninja of Die Antwoord. Eventually progressing into his own solo act his music is riddled with his hip hop roots that contribute to the bass heavy, trap fusion that meets culturally infused lyrics and South African influence. If his music wasn’t funky enough add the addition of all black attire from head to toe covered in googly eyes for good measure and without a doubt this live performance is one that will leave you a little unhinged. In only the best way possible.
For someone still in their 20’s Whitebear has a stronghold on exactly who he is musically and has proven to continue to deliver music that is ageless and has crossed not only boundaries but borders. He has played festivals like Envision Festival in Costa Rica, Ometeotl Festival in Mexico, Sonic Bloom in the U.S and Shambhala in Canada.
Priding himself in his music being quite dark and his name originating from a study done called “The White Bear Experiment” which essentially proved that thought suppression only makes those thoughts return much stronger in the long run, he has invited his fans to delve into their darkness and deal with their demons. His syrupy trance melodies are a musical articulation of just that, leaving his audience reeling every time.
Originally from Brisbane, Australia Slynk has a knack for all things funky. Having a musical background in piano, drums and guitar was only the beginning for Slynk. He was gifted a pair of turntables in 2004 and the love affair with production and Djing began. In 2009 he released three records on ghetto funk labels Goodgroove and Manmade. He is still releasing music dripping in old jazz funk influence and hip hop bass lines that even the late funk greats would be doin’ The Bump or The Funky Chicken to and getting down.
The 23-year-old producer, started his career with Haiti in mind. For him it’s about more than the music. It is about the people and being an outlet to help curb the poverty in Haiti. This sentiment has translated into his decision to start his own label called, Kid Coconut. Through his label he intends to seek out and contribute to helping Haitian artists. His recent release ‘Wherever I Go’ hit one million plays in two weeks which he should be ecstatic about because in his usual Samaritan manner, the proceeds from this release will go completely to Artists For Peace and Justice in Jacmel, Haiti to support these students. Not only is Michael Burn a young prodigy but his actions are a recent reminder that music can be a catalyst for positive change.
The best for last? Maybe. Venezuela and Ferraz’s creamy, emotionally laden production pulls at the heart strings and leaves yoru eardrums reverberating in blissful agreement. With his obvious Funk, House and R&B influences it’s no surprise that he says that labels like Soulection inspire him to keep doing what he is doing.
Originally from Venezuela, now living in Toronto, Canada. Anzola’s production is another that crosses borders and breaks boundaries. Anzola had played in two bands and released an album before moving to Toronto and going to recording school. He also started Subtle Blend, a producer showcase in Toronto, is the account manager for Canadian Art, and is still actively pursuing his production career. Mario Anzola is a multi-talent whose obvious love for art as a whole bleeds through in all that he does.
These are only the very tip of the evolving stream of musical talent around the world. There are so many more that could be mentioned but this should be a great jump off point for anyone looking to broaden their musical libraries and is brave enough to dive into as many different pockets of experimental electronic music as possible. The world is at your fingertips, very literally. Take advantage.