Thanks to all those who came down to the Camp Lo show at Cargo - it was a family affair up in there! Shouts out to Thing, Spin, Jehst, Stig of the Dump, Brotherman, 4649 Worldwide, Ryan P, Trinigladiata, Amy, Abbi … too many to mention … As ever, particular thanks to Camilla Waite for the awesome photos and to DJ Lok who managed to capture this raw (but real!) bit of live footage:
I even managed to get my “fan boy” on … couldn’t help it … it’s not every day you get to meet Camp Lo after all!
Thanks to all those who came down to the 9 February show at the Hootenanny - it was lovely to see so many familiar faces in the crowd! Particular thanks to Camilla Waite and Dfacer for capturing one of my favourite moments from the night on film - my tribute to the late, great J Dilla, “The Good Ones”. I hardly ever perform this track live but the gig was the day before the anniversary of Dilla’s passing, so it felt like the right thing to do. Here’s the clip above, in association with the good folks at www.UKHH.com. and if you want to hear the full track, which also includes a dedication to Big L, you can grab it for free from here.
What’s better than finding out one of your favourite groups is coming to town for the first time? Being asked to open up for them! I’m a huge fan so it’s a real honour to share a stage. It all goes down on 9 March at Cargo with the Doctor’s Orders. When this one drops, Luchini will pour from the sky …
HOOCHINOO LIVE AT MADAM JOJO’S, SOHO - 11 APRIL
More info on this one soon but please put it in the calendar for now…
I’m delighted to announce my first live performance of 2013, alongside the incomparable DJ Mr. Thing, this Saturday 9 February at the Hootananny in Brixton. Full details on the Facebook event or here:
We’ll be joined by the lovely and talented Lea Lea Jones. We shared a stage with her a few months ago at First Word’s Bedroom Bar residency and she set the bar so high I was scared to go on after her! Tough for me, but great for you lucky people …
First Word head honcho DJ Gilla will be keeping the records spinning but this time he’s assembled the mighty Thrift Store collective for some electronic jam session goodness, blending band and DJ into a continuous improvised set. These guys play for the likes of Alice Russell, Bonobo and Submotion Orchestra so we’re in safe hands.
More good news – if, like me, you’re still counting the pennies after a long stretch of festive excess, then you’ll be pleased to know that it’s only £3 on the door. It’s even free before 9pm for those that really overdid it … can’t say fairer than that! Hope to see you there.
I just wanted to thank you for your interest and support throughout an incredible 2012.
This year I …
Collaborated with Detroit’s finest MCs and an up and coming Paris producer …
Dropped a video with Sheffield’s favourite party-rocking DJ …
Coined the phrase FRMX …
Got my ‘apres-ski’ on (tip: flick to 3.17!) …
Shouted from the rooftops …
Supported some of my favourite artists …
Headlined opening night at my favourite festival …
Got busy on a boat …
Changed my name and did Something New …
Got big in Beijing …
And then went acoustic …
I did NONE of this on my own and would like to express my heartfelt thanks to the following people, without whom none of this would have been possible …
DJ Mr Thing, Glen Stone, No Sleep Nigel, Camilla Waite,Krilla, Andy H, Ogle Films, Theo Doherty, Dfacer, Devise, Elzhi, Spin Doctor, Rob Waller, Noah Ball, all Soundwave crew, all Soundcrash crew, DJ Gilla, Sri McKinnon, First Word Records, Soundcrash, DJ J-Cue and all Beijing crew, D.Ablo, Rafe and all at Sofar Sounds, Waajeed/Jeedo, DJ Simbad, Finn Peters, Inspectah Deck, Skinnyman, Val, Jessica Greenfield, Sid Mercutio, Amy and James of Eaton House Studio and last but certainly not least, each and every one of you.
I have even more in store for 2013. But for now, I just wanted to send you all my best wishes for the festive season and to say HAPPY NEW YEAR to one and all!
I’m delighted to share with you this acoustic performance of A Walk In the Park, courtesy of the good folks at Sofar Sounds. Nobody had ever heard the tune before but it was like they were performing it with me - I’ve never seen a crowd pick up on a track so quickly! Thanks to everyone who was there and in particular thanks to the supremely talented D.Ablo for backing me up on guitar and vocals ...
The original version of the track is available on my new digital EP, Time For Something New … which is OUT NOW via iTunes, Amazonthe Essa Bandcamp page and all other good online outlets. It features Wu-Tang Clan’s Inspectah Deck, UK Hip-Hop legend Skinnyman, Simbad (Gilles Peterson Worldwide Family), Waajeed/Jeedo (Slum Village / PPP) and some other fantastic guests and producers.
Released 5 November on First Word Records, it features some incredible producers and guest artists, including Wu-Tang Clan’s Inspectah Deck, UK Hip-Hop legend Skinny Man, Detroit don Waajeed / Jeedo (Slum Village / PPP), Simbad (Gilles Peterson Worldwide Family), Finn Peters (Bansuri / Accidental Records) and Hyperdub rising stars LV, amongst others.
Ladies and gentlemen, it gives me great pleasure to present … FRMX2 …
This is the second instalment in my FRMX series, a collection of exclusive remixes, cover versions, freestyles and reinterpretations. Available now for free download via www.yungun.bandcamp.com.
Missed the first one and wondering what the hell “FRMX” means? Well, try running this equation: Freestyle + RMX = FRMX … Simple as that!
This time I’m taking on some of my favourites by Miguel Atwood Ferguson and Carlos Nino, Ye Mighty, Hudson Mohawke, Mark Pritchard, Joe “Hot Chip” Goddard and Cody ChesnuTT. This is for promo purposes only but do please feel free to Tweet, post on Facebook, blog and share - all tracks are clean and radio-friendly.
I’m releasing this to get you guys ready because I have some big news coming about the release of the long-awaited Middle Man album … More on that soon but, for now, please just enjoy this little taster!
By the way, track 1 on FRMX2 (“Eternity”) is a rework of “A Message”, a track I wrote for the Bottletop Band’s charity album “Dream Service” alongside Fink, Sam Duckworth (Get Cape …) and Mario C (Beastie Boys). Please support the fantastic charity Bottletop by buying that album and giving generously. More details here.
Well, it looks like I owe you an apology! But first, maybe I can sweeten you up with this …
What’s a FRMX? Well it’s halfway between a freestyle and a remix.Have a listen and it’ll make sense… These are alternative versions of a few tracks from theGrown Man Business album and theJack The World mixtape. Me and Mr Thing did them just for fun - hope you enjoy them too!
Feel free to share / Tweet / blog etc. if you like. No promo on this one, I’m just sending it out to my peoples by way of apology.Why an apology? Two reasons …
GIG CANCELLATION - 18 MAY
Sadly, for reasons beyond our control, the gig with Jehst and others on 18 May at 229 on Great Portland Street has been cancelled. If you’ve already bought a ticket you should be able to get refund from the site you bought it through, or if not just go towww.agmp.co.uk. Sorry,I promise I will be performing in London again soon!Watch this space. And if you haven’t got tickets toSoundwave yet then hurry!
It seems a few of you recently received a rather bland email from me about my “weekly social digest”. I didn’t mean to send that to you - the only thing I “digest” on a weekly basis is a medium-rare steak and I certainly wouldn’t email you about that. It was automatically sent by my mailing list software - muggins here forgot to update my settings properly. Sorry! I’ve sorted it now so you shouldn’t receive it again.
Hi guys, hope you’re enjoying the Jack The World mixtape!
I’ve been getting some great responses. Big thanks to everyone who’s downloaded it. Even bigger thanks to everyone who’s posted, blogged, tweeted etc. to help spread the word. Havent’s copped it yet? What are you waiting for?! You can grab it for free from my Bandcamp page or just click on the cover art at the bottom of this email. Got some videos planned for some of the tracks - look out for those real soon.
But I digress! There’s something else I wanted to tell you guys about. I’ve just featured on a brand new single by Andy H of First Word Records called The Main Attraction.
You can hear it on Andy’s Soundcloud here. I suggest you play it LOUD because this one bangs! …
For the original YG fans, it’s kind of a return to the Dancing Shoes/Nico Suave club banger sound, with a bit of a dancehall edge. Hope you like it! We’re shooting a video this weekend so look out for that soon too.
Well, finally, here it is! My first full-length project in a while … expertly blended by the DMC winner and self-proclaimed “Champion Nerd” DJ Mr Thing … Ladies and gents it gives me great pleasure to bring you ….
Need radio edits? Grab them fromhere. Or just email me back and I’ll send them you.
I’m not gonna give you the full blurb about the mixtape (you can read that here). Instead I’ll just say that I hope you enjoy it and, if you do, I’d be really greatful if you’d share it with your friends. Blog, Tweet, FB, smoke signals, morse code - whatever. The aim is just for as many people to get to hear it as possible, so anything you can do to spread the word would be appreciated!
Before I go, I just want to say a few thanks: to DJ Mr Thing, without whom this would have been impossible; to Camilla Waite, without whom I would be invisible; to Glen Stone, without whom I would be unpresentable; to No Sleep Nigel, without whom I would be inaudible; and to Pistache Clothing, without whom I would be … well … naked!
Bottletop Band - “A Message” ft. Yungun - out now!
I’m extremely proud to be involved in the new album by the Bottletop Band, “Dream Service”, which is out now on iTunes. As well as performing on the record, I actually helped with the legal work behind the project too - first time I’ve ever done that!
I feature on the track A Message, alongside Fink, Nina Becker and Sam Duckworth (Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly).
The album also features (*deep breath*) Eliza Doolittle, Carl Barat, Gruff Rhys, Tim Burgess (The Charlatans), Fly, Sam Sparro, Didz Hammond (Dirty Pretty Things), Gary Powell (Libertines), Money Mark, Rodrigo Amarante (Little Joy), Kassin, Domenico, Buraka Som Sistema, Matt Helders (Arctic Monkeys), Andy Nicholson & Jon McClure (Reverend & the Makers), VV Brown, Seb Rochford, Drew McConnell (Babyshambles) & Matt Park (The Noisettes) and there are also remixes by Evil 9, Greymatter, Radioslave, Optimo, Howie B and Stereo MC’s.
The Bottletop Band is a cross-pollination of the sounds and stars of British music with a host of like-minded Brazilian musicians. In 2008 the charity Bottletop devised the concept of an interchangeable lineup of leading musicians collaborating on either side of the planet, with the aim of producing a groundbreaking cross-cultural record. Bottletop and a number of the artists on the album set up recording sessions over a two year period at Dean Street Studios in Soho and in Rio De Janeiro and asked everyone to let loose. Super producer Mario C Jr (renowned for his legendary production work with The Beastie Boys and Bjork) oversaw the entire project and mixed the record to create the 10 track album “Dream Service”.
All profits from the project go towards Bottletop’s charitable work, which focuses on alleviating poverty, supporting grassroots education projects and empowering young people to take control of their lives. Bottletop supports initiatives in Brazil, Malawi, Rwanda, Mozambique and the UK, providing employment and addressing key issues such as sexual and reproductive health, substance abuse and gender equality.
Besides releasing incredible music like this (check out their amazing “Sound Affects” compilation series), Bottletop also designs and produces ethically sourced and environmentally friendly fashion items, generating employment in Salvador, Brazil.Well-known fans of Bottletop accessories include Jesse J, Kate Moss, Rachel Weisz, Jessica Alba, Annie Lennox and Livia Firth.
Big shout out to all Footsteppa crew - my man C.O.N.E. and Mariska just passed through London - great to see you guys! They handed me a promo CD which I’m very excited about. If you like banging, bass-heavy music you have to check this label out. Straight out of Rotterdam - Dock City in the place! Click the logo to check out their website. Some more Yungun/Footsteppa collaborations coming soon ….
Here’s a clip of me recording vocals at my home studio over a Mozart-sampling beat. This was for the Mozart (Un)Rapped project, a fantastic competition I was recently involved in. I’m afraid the competition’s closed now so this post is a bit late (sorry!). Congratulations to the fantastically talented Brotherman for scooping the prizes. Bigup also to Kosyne, Kelakovski, Taharka and all Louis Den Beat Cypher crew for the beat. Thanks to Giovanna for getting me involved. Enjoy!
Much love to Henry, (Soundspecies), Beatnik, D’Ablo and Guynamite (Bogelwaltz) and the rest of the cameo crew! For more info on the Prosoulytes, check out their Facebook page For more info on Yungun, go to www.yungun.com.
Mr Thing and I are almost ready to drop our “Jack the World” mixtape. It’s going to be available via the Yungun Bandcamp page (where there’s already a few free tracks to download). Tracklist and some music from the project will be up on here soon, but for now here’s the cover art …
Time For Something New - Digital EP Released 5 Nov 2012
First Word are proud to
present Time For Something New,the FW debut from Essa.He’s no newbie though - under his
former name, Yungun, he rose through the UK Hip-Hop ranks to reach a
worldwide audience winning praise from Nas, Mark Ronson
and Cody ChesnuTT. Loyal fans have waited patiently for this, his
first commercial release since 2006's Grown Man Business album with
long-time collaborator DJ Mr Thing.In the meanwhile, though, he's kept them entertained, gigging
and recording with the likes of Guru (Gang Starr), The Herbaliser
and The Nextmen and releasing a series of free downloads – the Jack
The World mixtape and a set of freestyles/remixes he calls the FRMX
EPs.With a truck-load of hot
tracks now ready to go, the time was right to officially re-launch one of the
UK’s most distinctive and original voices.
With a new label and a
new(ish!) name comes a new musical direction... Time For Something New!Whilst he won't be abandoning his
hip-hop roots, Essa has always had an ear for a variety of musical styles and
this EP shows his growth as an artist.He's roped in collaborators as diverse as Simbad (Gilles Peterson
Worldwide Family), Waajeed (Slum Village / PPP), Finn Peters (Bansuri /
Accidental Records), plus UK Hip-Hop legend Skinny Man and Wu-Tang
Clan's Inspectah Deck.Add in
a remix from Hyperdub rising stars LV and you have a release that
leaps over musical boundaries.
The EP takes in
latin-fuelled bass music (Something New), low-slung anthemic hip hop (Let's
Start Living & Panache) and nu soul (A Walk in The Park) with LV's Panache
remix adding minimal, claustrophobic club beats to the mix.Tying it all together is Essa's
powerful lyrical flow, his on-point rhymes effortlessly blending serious subject matter
with witty one-liners.The EP
is a taste of things to come, showing that, beyond tight rhymes and banging
beats, there is real song-writing ability here. Look out for his new
album 'The Middle Man' due in 2013.
Artist: Essa (formerly Yungun) Title: Time For Something New Label: First Word Released: November 5th 2012 Distribution: Kudos Records Format: Digital EP Cat No: FW95
1. SOMETHING NEW (PROD. SIMBAD) 2. PANACHE (PROD. WAAJEED) 3. LET'S START LIVING FT. INSPECTAH DECK AND SKINNY MAN (PROD. FINN PETERS) 4. A WALK IN THE PARK FT. JESSICA GREENFIELD (PROD. SID MERCUTIO) 5. PANACHE (LV REMIX)