What do you get when you put South Africa’s foremost dub sound system that has played in major festivals across Europe including Dub Camp Festival and invited to tour Brazil for two years in a row and recently returned from a fireful performance at Rototom sunsplash Africa Edition. Put that alongside the Big Bad Sound, the sound of Soweto, the sound that has powered all the dances in and around Soweto, Jozi and Gauteng in general. The Sound of the People by the people for the people. The result is the display of a sound system culture that has been a staple in the ghetto’s from way back then. When Kebra Ethiopia Sound from the East meets with The Big Bad Sound from the West; Its a joyful celebration and these are the chronicles of the dances in the ghetto.
The first time I went to Eeka Mouz bash I got hopelessly lost, but I knew that I was close, so I pulled over and asked some yutes if they might know where’s Eeka’s house. “You mean uRasta!” they exclaimed, “Hayi its easy, just go down this road and when you get to that corner, ask anybody where are amaRasta, just ask nje.” I did as I was told, but this time before I could open my mouth to ask, the response came, “Ah Jah Lady, aboMarasta ne ispeaker sezi phumile, jika ka so na ka so, ozo’uzwa nje ke sound u landele is sound, uzo wa bona amaRasta se wa jaiva, ngeke u lahleke”
Such is the popularity of this annual dance, hosted by Eeka Mouz, owner and operator of the Big Bad Sound. He hosts this dance to celebrate his earthstrong, and every year he invites the sounds from the east and all over to come juggle. The dance is held at his home yard in White City, otherwise known as Reggae City. Issa roadblock. Two sets of mega speakers are set in the middle of the road at opposing sides facing each other at about 50 meters apart. The space inbetween is taken up by Jah sons and dawtas as they chant the King Stepper- the unique South African Dub Dance – to the ital tunes bussing from the speakers.
All tribes are welcome at Eeka’s bash. This is one gathering where you will find all mansions, ghetto yutes, Elders, baldheads, rude gyals and bwoys, kings and queens with their offsprings, young and old intermingle, all in the name of Reggae, Roots and Dub. This is where you will spot old acquaintances and make new ones. Ital is served to all (by the way, Mrs Eeka Mouse serves the best ital dish inna whole of Soweto, now you know).
We not only here to celebrate the big Mouse Bass Day, but we gathered to revive and revitalise bonds through Reggae music and culture, some come to heal, some come to enjoy, some come to support, some come to be seen, but we all come because we LOVE Eeka!
Kebra Ethiopia Sounds had a fire set as usual, dishing out some roots and culture, message music to inspire, not only to dance to. But it was when they dropped a super brand new Bongo Riot tune that things got really interesting. Bongo Riot is such a versatile and matured artist, and that is what we experienced when listening to his latest single produced by Doc Inity of Kebra Ethiopia Sound. Bongo Riot on Dub. An exclusive preview for them ghetto people, before it hits the speakers in Europe. What an honour.
Then as if by cue, when Giggs and Tuxedo hit the decks, the first tune that they played was dlozi Lam. Representing East Rand to the fullest. This is the most popular tune of the year, which has seen it official release earlier this year under the Baak Ah Yaad Label, but if you have attended enough dances in the ghetto, you would surely have heard it. Its a hit tune and it speaks to every one. If there is ever a come back story to be told, then Bongo Riot is the one to tell that story. If you have not heard the track, listen here. Dlozi Lam got pulled up 3 times with the crowd singing along and was immediately followed by another Bongo Riot tune, Amapakistan , another favourite.
Giggs and Tuxedo continued to murder the soweto massive with the sounds coming from the east. My Number One Riddim produced by one Baldhead Rasta who hails from the east was also played to an appreciative audience. The Riddim features hard hitting artists like Phemelo Chantty Natural, Jeremiah Fyah Ises, Momo Dread ft. Benji Dread, Bongo Riot and Ceebo. The crowd could not get enough, and Giggs & Tuxedo kept hitting us with fine tunes, and the crowd’s favourite was Mmalefatshe, by Chantty Natural.
Then it was NOK the champion who defended the territory. He opened his set with Momo Dread’s Amehlo Abomvu acapella followed by the original mix from firetown productions in Soweto. That is a killer tune that you will never go wrong and it got the soweto massive belching it out. He kept on hitting us with some local niceness and we absolutely enjoyed it. A spontaneous mini clash of some sort with our artist taking centre stage. That was epic, and it happened at Rasta Eeka’s Bass Day Bash. Rumours are gwaan that a similar feat is about to happen again in Delmas near Dayveton. We taking it to the East this round.
In Bass we trust. The east meets west chronicles.