THE BLUE GENE STORY SO FAR…
I met Charles Amblard during one of my performances with Flatfoot Dance Company, a group that has consistently sustained my Spoken Word development over many years by providing me with platform after platform as a poet and performer. We were playing the piece “Bloodlines” at the Umbrella Festival of Contemporary Dance in Johannesburg and Charles was touring with an invited artist from France. He approached me after one of our performances and introduced himself and we hooked up for coffee the next day. He explained his intentions in collaborating with me as a rapper over some distinctive grooves he had created using Logic and his proficiency as a guitarist. He played me a few. I was immediately keen. We plugged in half a head phone and turned on a dictaphone and tried to sync up some rhymes with his beats in the back room of the Dance School that was hosting us. He took it all back with him to Paris and I got an email a little while later on asking me if I would take the beat into studio and lay down the vocals properly for him to mix and master. I did, he did, we made our first track together, over a distance of more then 9000kms using digital file sharing uploads and downloads.
Now that we knew it could work we were determined to make more music. It was Charles who suggested that we take it further and try and find residencies around the world that would take him and I on and let us make our music together with local artists. Fate got involved when we discovered that 2012/2013 was the year of the French South Africa season worldwide that would see a global exchange of artists and cultural practitioners representing the two countries in various projects. We jumped in head first and got the attention of the Director of the Alliance Franscaise in Durban, Sarah Doignon, who immediately came on board and pitched us as a potential project for the season to host in 2012. Our pitch succeeded and in July 2012 BLUE GENE SA was initiated. Charles and I are building on the momentum of the 2012 project to continue to expand and discover the real potential of BLUE GENE. We have big plans, but at the basic level, it’s all about the music. BLUE GENE is where I can really get my rocks off as a Spoken Word flavored Hip Hop artist. I had been calling myself that for some time before this project came along and helped me define exactly what that means.
[THE BLUE GENE DEMO is available on Itunes via the image below]