This track is launched based on the fact that so many artist are paying homage to local icons – such as – Doc Shebeleza – Bob Mabena, etc. DJ Ready D decided to add his contribution and do a song mentioning high profile living legends from Cape Town. D is taking a humorous approach celebrating and tapping into Cape Town’s dialect – heritage and subject matter that the listener can relate to.
EK IS JOU BARBER is a metaphor that says – I am Cape Town the Coolest City on Earth.
Check it out at - http://soundcloud.com/brassevanniekaap/boeta-d-ek-is-joe-barber
I was born and raised in District Six and relocated to Lentegeur Mitchell’s Plain due to previous Apartheid government policies. As a young man growing up on the Cape Flats – I had to stare down the barrel of a gun held by a perpetrator called Racism on a daily basis. Growing up demoralized and disenfranchised has a knock on effect that leads to self-destruction. The impact of this legacy can still be witnessed by many social ills including drug, substance abuse and gangsterism in our communities. This journey into darkness was a part of my life’s travels. Sadly I have lost family members and close friends due to this social breakdown structure. My salvation came through the influence of Hip Hop Culture’s conscious and activist elements. This culture helped to shape my character and guide my thoughts when dealing with racism. As a touring artist – I have traveled to many countries, giving me the privilege to inter-act with many cultures. These experiences gave me a broader outside perspective of how I fit into society.
My view on racism is that it acts as a cancer to society and it robs us of the opportunity to experience the true potential, power and glory of being a human. It is the worst trait that could be bestowed on our children. If we trace the history of racism, we will find that it’s responsible for the worst crimes against humanity. This condition is a catalyst for wars and encourages fragmentation and counter productive behaviour. Racism is such an evil genius that it blinds thosethat posses it from the fact that it exist within. This is a dilemma that leads to division and weakening of the human spirit. Too many great women and men have sacrificed their lives in order for us to have freedom. We should not let their efforts wither away by allowing ourselves to become victims or transgressors of this horrible act. As South Africans – we need to capitalize on our history and use it to influence and inspire the world to take a step in the right direction. I ask my fellow countrymen and woman to reject all forms of hatred and racism.
I would like to encourage the community to participate and voice your opinions by clicking on the link below.
Grand Master Ready D
I grew up in a period where young men and women on the Cape Flats had the privilege of being educated stacked against them. Politics and social ills where huge obstacles to overcome, these factors created mental and motivational challenges that leaned towards education. Our youth are still plagued by many issues that act as stumbling blocks in their lives and in order to create a bright society we need education and principled young minds to help our communities advance. I believe that there are no shortcuts through life, the only way to excel and to be counted in this day and age is to embrace education.
Partnering with SAE will help to create an opportunity and platform for a determined young mind to grow in the audio and graphics field. Candidates pursuing this bursary opportunity will require them to be committed and motivated to embrace this life changing educational journey. I wish those taking this step all of the best. DJ Ready D Apply now http://capetown.sae.edu/scholarships/ready-d-scholarship/ Applications for 2015 close 1 April 2015
The Feb/March edition features then deluxe version of Big Air Society my latest project available now on iTunes. 2 exclusive tracks, loads of turntable gymnastics and that lead single featuring Youngsta & Veezo included – get it NOW by buying the magazine at all major outlets or visit http://www.hypemagazine.co.za
My aim is to push the envelope and remain as creative as possible with my productions. Fusing various music and audio elements help’s to make the sonic textures interesting. My history as a producer goes back to the nineties with albums by political Hip Hop activist – POC (Prophets of Da City). We recorded and released many firsts for South Africa and the rest of the world by incorporating African elements, language and dialects in our music – but still remaining true to Hip Hop. I refuse to be limited by a one dimensional approach to music. As a producer and DJ – I love to experiment. This way of thinking enabled me to work with Jazz – Classical – Rock – Dubstep – Trap – Breaks – Hip Hop and many other genres in the EDM arena.
My goal is to grow as an artist and to provide the listener with memorable music experiences. Big Air Society is a a Tribute to Hip Hop’s breaks and beats era with an updated hard hitting electronic and turntablist foundation. Skate – Battle – Break – Drift and catch big air to this soundtrack. – Just add volume. Listen to the tracks on Soundcloud – https://soundcloud.com/djreadyd/sets/big-air-society Buy on iTunes – itunes.apple.com/us/artist/dj-ready-d/id913521372
Big Air Society Overview
This project is DJ Ready D’s first self produced music undertaking.
After his production contributions for critically acclaimed groups such as P.O.C ,BVK and doing music for TV/ Film and various artist – D decided to revisit his B Boy roots.
The album captures the heart and soul of Hip Hop’s foundation and Battle Breaks combining DJ Ready D’s Turntablist Scratch acrobatics. The project is packed with uptempo beats designed to challenge and take dancers to their limits. DJ Ready D deliver his lyrical skill on his track titled – No Pressure – collaborating with two of South Africa’s most talented rappers – Youngsta Cpt and Veezo ( Jhb). D attacks Anti Riggamortis Machine – a Dubstep banger with new intricate scratch techniques.
Big Air Societies are adrenalin charged people that live life on the edge.
Like B Boys and Girls performing gravity defying power moves – skateboarders doing mind bending flips – Motor X riders ramping for Big Air with jaw dropping arial Jumps and Drifters sliding their cars in clouds of smoke to catch nearly impossible angles.
DJ Ready D’s interpretation of Big Air is the the point of no return where the practitioner experience total freedom, peace, harmony and total ecstasy. He continue to express that riders can get themselves psyched up in order to enter their zone – dancers can battle, even edit the tracks for shows and meditate to the beats and Turntablist can perform their intricate mix, scratch and juggle technics to these rhythms. Big Air Society the album can be utilized as a audio tool that can be consumed as the sonic equivalent of a potent can of energy drink.
May the Force be with you
We always have the desire to hit the high seas, jet set, pack our bags and to explore the world. To many of us greener pastures or the opportunity to make that break lies beyond our borders. Sometimes that is true or the opposite depending on what motivates us to travel.
I will do my best to shed some light on some of the travelling experiences I had as a member of POC and BVK. Our first international performance was at the Montruex Jazz Festival in Switzerland organized by Quincy Jones ( He produced some of Michael Jackson’s greatest hits). That was a very laid back journey that helped pave the way for our future as international performing artist.
After being banned in South Africa during the nineties we signed our first international deal with a U.K based record label. From that point on we started touring most of the United Kingdom meeting many interesting people on our trips. When we first landed in the U.K we were in awe of the place because it was a different world for us. The way people did things on the music front was special because we were getting exposed to many things that used to be a mystery to us. We used to stop any person on the streets that looked like a Hip Hop head and question them about the scene. Sometimes it was embarrassing because people would think it was a group of thugs approaching them and they would jet like they were running for their lives. We used to put in the kilometres on foot and that is how we came across many cool record stores, clubs, clothing and places that would interest us. We made an effort to stick to the streets because that’s how we made contacts and rocked in many underground ciphers, pirate radio stations and clubs.
From the streets we rocked at major festivals across Europe and Scandinavia. Our first trip to Denmark was the illest because of our reception and the cool nature of the people there. The city and its architecture was mind blowing. Boys from the Cape Flats performing in all this different countries was a feeling that was hard to believe and it became surreal to a certain degree.
Our first performance in Demark turned out into 2- hour show because the crowd was mad hyped and they would not let us go. It reached a point where they were banging on the stage and demanding more. With that kind of energy we came out stage diving and doing crazy stuff that made me feel like I was in a Smack Down Wrestling ring.
We hit many countries by Bus, car, planes, trains and ferries. This was something that was hard to believe because at that period artist did not operate on that level in South Africa. With a solid tour schedule and a competent organised management team we ended up touring and sharing stages with the likes of – The Fugees, James Brown, Public Enemy, The Grave Diggers, Craig Mack, Show Biz, Rock Raider, De la Soul, Cypress Hill, Aesop Rock – and the list goes on.
The best thing was getting the technical experience and learning how to project and enhance our performance on big stages. One of the big secretes and keys to success on the international platform are to be different and well polished as a group or solo performer.
Being the new kids on the international scene maid us work much harder than every other band because we did not have a hit song to piggy back on. Our stage shows, presentations, interviews and our philosophies made us a force to be reckoned with.
Unfortunately that’s all I have space for in this issue. Apart from all the cool people and shows, there was a lot of pressure and hard times to endure. If you are able to handle this aspect of travelling and stick to your guns – your will become a successful artist.
The number one rule is – build your skills, pack light, don’t forget your passport and your toothbrush.
Farewell and May the Force be with you.
DJ Ready D
Around about 2006 South Africa’s biggest hip hop publication did an interview with me…Let’s take a step back
1.As a pioneer of South African deejaying, how has the artform changed for the modern-day DJs in South Africa? (eg. different opportunities, technology, publicity, etc. Speak on what the scene was like back then and what it’s become today – the good and the bad, struggles and success, etc.)
D-Technology has helped to evolve the art of being a DJ. In South Africa that is evident because access to the inter- net, DVD and magazines are helping to build interest. I realised through my work on TV, I managed to reach quite a huge audience and that helped to promote turntablism amongst people who are not into Hip Hop. In the past DJ’s had more of a cult status and many of them were only based in their resident clubs.
I think due to our political climate in the past huge bashes and open-air parties were out of the question, it would have been classified as illegal gatherings. DJ’s at that time did not have the hype machine to help boost their profiles.
2. How long did it take you to master the basics of deejaying in a time where it wasn’t a popular hobby?
D –It was very difficult for me in the beginning because there wasn’t anybody scratching on a serious level and no clubs played Hip Hop music. I did not have people to teach me, so everything was learn as you go and I did not have professional equipment. I feel that there is always room for constant elevation and I feel like I have not mastered anything yet because I am always in search of that perfect beat or the perfect scratch. Just when you think you have the move locked down something new creeps in.
3. What’s your take on the new-school of South African DJs? (more bling and money-orientated, egos and arrogance, etc.)
D-We have DJ’s that were introduced to this music and art form at different times and stages. For those that do not understand the deep science of being a DJ (Turntablist) – I wish them luck. A true artist knows that his art is above everything else besides the creator. Many DJ’s are living out their video fantasies and that normally happens in the early stages of immaturity. If you live that lifestyle then cool or if you want to come across as a character, the choice is yours.
The money is the added bonus, egos and arrogance limits your chances of becoming complete because humanity and talent works in harmony.
4. It seems like your role back in the day was to develop hip hop. Now that hip hop is at a popular level, what is the role of the DJ today?
D – My role and take on what I did in the past have never changed. I always wanted to reach as much people as I could to expose this art form. I never thought of myself as a pioneer or anything else in that sense. I always wanted to rock parties, rock the decks and see how far I could stretch the envelope. I think the role of a DJ is to move the crowd on all different levels (spiritually, emotionally and physically). It is important to develop your own style because many mainstream DJ’s have stagnated the music. Many new school DJ’s do not know how to read crowds and set up for the next DJ. They think owning the latest cd’s and banging all the hits at the wrong times make them great DJ’s. They don’t take into account the whole event from a warm-up phase to the peak hour climax and how to leave room for the event and continue on a high note.
5. This feature draws comparisons between the originators of deejaying in South Africa and the new-blood DJs today. With modern DJs having their own radio shows, hosting larger parties, and money being more central to the artform, is this a positive or negative thing for the future of hip hop?
D-The originators busted their chops and paid their dues over and over. They were the only resident DJ’s in their clubs and they could rock crowds for 10hrs non-stop. They knew the music. There is a difference between knowing music and understanding music. I have nothing against a DJ making money especially if that’s your bread and butter I have a problem with airhead cats that do this for the wrong reasons because they are killing a beautiful thing. Radio, TV and the big events are important because those are the platforms we all dream of having. It unifies people, if your ego and inexperience upstage the events – you deserve to be a failure.
6. What are your frustrations with the new breed of DJs? (Who host radio shows and cater to a much more commercial market.)
D -Unfortunately we are always going to end up with people that will misrepresent a specialised art. Commercial arena’s have a track record of hiring personalities not artist and people who know what they are doing, just look at all the TV adds and how they portray our cultures. Pretty faces and corny voices seem to be their preference and that is one of the reasons why people will never capture the essence of a movement.
7. Do you feel the originators of South African deejaying are paid enough respect for pioneering a now popular element of hip hop?
D -Many DJ’s are getting recognition including myself, but I feel not enough research have been done to pay homage to DJ’s that where there before us. It is the older DJ’s that got us listening to music differently and inspired us to get behind the wheels.
8. The commercialisation of hip hop is a big issue with lots of people. What are your views of this and how can it be changed?
D-If you are able to make a career and feed your seed then I’m all for that. I think that artist need to pay more attention to the business aspect of this industry. Be sure about yourself and your intentions. If you want to milk the cow for what it is worth, you will eventually end up pissing against the wind. The changes that need to be made are to get Hip Hop more organised and professional. We need to stop the petty bullshit and stop blaming others for your dumb ass decisions and failure. We need to support and build a following that will make us independent. Once we are successful, we can control and set he scene for our commercial markets.
9. Do radio DJs water-down the rawness of hip hop, since they have to cater to the heads at the same time as catering to the younger, pop-culture people?
D – The only time that heads will be happy is when they are running their own radio stations – (THAT BRINGS ME TO MY PREVIOUS POINT). If Hip Hop gets watered down on a mainstream station, don’t get mad because that is the nature of mainstream radio. If we don’t run our own shit, we are always going to bitch and fight about things we don’t understand and own.
10. Does it frustrate you to hear radio disc jockeys using the title ‘DJ’ when all they do is introduce track titles on air, as opposed to creating music from scratches and breaks?
D-I used get mad about those things until I decided to make moves and out manoeuvre those cats and make the people know what the deal is. We have to give respect to many radio announcers (DJ’s) that helped get Hip Hop some airplay. I take a tactical approach to counter many of these obstacles that plague us.
11. Do you think DJs are doing enough to ‘give back’ to the community? (eg. Doing youth upliftment projects, fund-raising concerts, workshops, etc.)
D-I have worked and still work with many DJ’s that have done a lot for our communities.
Down in Cape Town we have a tradition of doing parkjams and street events for more that 15 years and it is growing from strength to strength. Many heads on this side have done incredible upliftment work all the way into prisons. I feel that more can be done amongst the established DJ’s to help generate funds where it is needed the most.
12. With your record label, what type of artists are you wanting to sign?
D-I am looking for dedicated, focused and disciplined artist because I had enough of this instant 5 minute noodle wannabe cats. I like to work with people that love music, multi dimensional in their thinking and willing to take chances.
13. Beef in hip hop…is it heavy amongst DJs? What sort of things are causing friction between the artists and how can this be countered?
D -I feel that competition is healthy and that gets interpreted as beef in many cases. Beef normally develop amongst cats that are immature and insecure. I don’t think there is a quick fix for beef because many people are on some soapy shit and they love the drama.
14. What’s the contrast between Cape hip hop and Joburg hip hop with regards to commercialisation and support for the DJs?
D-In Cape Town we don’t have many commercial avenues to get exposure. We are forced to get organised and develop different strategies. I can only speak for the DJ’s and heads that I work with. We have just started our own company in order to take matters into our own hands. We as S.A DJ’s always got to face the nightmare of dealing with promoters and a few club owners that do not want to pay the artist what they are worth. We have to build a stronger profile in the commercial markets in order for us to reap benefits and make sure we are portrayed respectfully.
15. What’s the one thing you wished you could have done that would have helped you more with your musical career?
D-I wished I were equipped with knowledge about the industry when I started out.
Info for fact box:
What are your top 5 albums of all time?
It takes a nation of millions to hold us back – Public Enemy
Age of truth – Prophets of the City
Bigger and Deffer – LL Cool J
Together For ever – Run DMC
Enter the Wu Tang (36 Cambers) – Wu Tang Clan
There are many other albums that deserve top 5 statuses. The reason why I chose these albums is because of its history and how it helped change the sound of Hip Hop.
DJ Babu and DJ Premier
Favourite South African city to perform?
I love to perform in all cities because each city presents a new challenge.
What 3 MCs would you like to hear rapping over one of your beats?
Rock (Heltah Skeltah), Tebz (5th Floor) and D Stroy