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To all the dancehall fans out there – I come bearing the good news that Major Lazer is coming to town.
If you don’t know who that is then perhaps this one is not for you. But should you really want to try out new things then you need to be in Joburg on February 8, or Cape Town the next day.
Scheduled for a two-city tour, for the first time in South Africa, Major Lazer (pictured) will tour here as part of the Olmeca Tequilla Mad Decent Block Party.
Now if you know anything about the Mad Decent parties you’ll be aware that they are some of the best in the world. The block parties are well known throughout the US and for the first time the City of Gold and the Mother City get a taste of that international standard.
Mad Decent is a record label based in Los Angeles that have Major Lazer on their roster. Also in their employ and coming to South Africa will be Dillon Francis and Flosstradamus.
If you ever wondered what was going on in Snoop Lion’s head when he produced that reggae album Reincarnated, Major Lazer is what happened. The group travelled with Snoop to Jamaica, during what should be his “depression” as they produced a very weird album which must have been a hit with the reggae and dancehall audiences.
The group comprises members Diplo, Jillionaire and Walshy Fire and Diplo has worked with other artists such as Mr Vegas and Beyonce. Major Lazer have also toured festivals like Coachella, Pitchfork, Sonar and Sassquatch.
Their first album, Guns Don’t Kill People… Lazers Do (2009), did very well in the dancehall market and featured remixes of some of the biggest known hits including Lil’ Wayne’s Lollipop.
Francis is an LA native who also made a name for himself with a sound he describes as “reggae tone meets Dutch house, meets anything you want it to be”. For this line-up he is probably the artist who most likes to experiment so expect to be taken somewhere you haven’t been before.
Flosstradamus is a DJ duo from Chicago known for their incredible hype on the decks. Anyone who has been to a good club knows the gig’s mood is translated by the DJ’s body language and this pair always has energy.
lThe Joburg leg of the tour is scheduled for February 8 at Newtown’s Mary Fitzgerald Square. Then the party moves to Cape Town’s Dias Parking Lot, Heeren-gracht the next day. Tickets: from R275 at www.webtickets.com.