Fave Friday #4: Just A Band

#nowplaying

Put on this song by artist and cool kid Joshua Obaga, although I first got acquainted with the funkiness that is Antibablas through the Fela Kuti docu, Finding Fela. Afrobeat just makes me want to do life BIG, you know? No wonder Fela was so ouchea, cause there’s no way something this grand can be in your head and yet you carry out life quietly. No way.

Now to the matter at hand:

JAB

You guys probably know the hashtag:faves, Just A Band have a new single out. If you don’t skizeni

Talked to the guys kidogo about the Owuor Arunga-assisted track and they were kind enough to share their thoughts:

SWL: It’s been a little while since SFTD. Why did you pick this song to make a comeback and why now?

Bill:  I guess, sometimes to be creative, you need to take a little break and live, so you can have something new to say. So that’s what’s been happening over the past 2 years. It’s becoming easier to process and make music again without necessarily trying to emulate past work.

​Mbithi: It felt like a soft launch​. We could have come back with a BANGER, but this felt more appropriate with all the time that’s passed between albums.

Dan: Between albums there’s always a growth or change in the ideas and sounds we’re creating, and so in a way we need to reintroduce ourselves each time. In that sense, this felt like a cool jam to walk up to someone, introduce yourself and start a conversation with.

   SWL: What’s your favourite bit of the song? (Mine is that bass in verse 2. Inaniguzaguza. The horns are killer too. Shout out to Mr. Arunga)

Bill: That’s mine too actually 🙂 The bass in the 2nd verse and the horns. Love the bridge as well! Been listening to a lot of Franco and his basslines were mwah.

Dan: I particularly dig the chorus harmonies! (which featured their JAB Pianist/Live shows Musical Director Joe Were)

Mbithi: The chorus for sure.​

JAB 2

SWL: Watching you guys at African Nouveau, y’all sounded way earthier and funkier (not to mention very solid as a musical unit) than you have in your previous work, which was a little more airy and electric. This song is also distinctly funky. Should we expect this shift in your sound-scape to be in the album? Particularly because your larger band seems to be a permanent fixture of your live performances lately?

Dan: Thanks for the comments on the show! We’re always trying to improve and experiment with the set, so it could be that it keeps growing beyond the earthy, funk stuff we’re doing now. In terms of the album there’s definitely more live instrumental contributions and jams with members of the live band than we’ve done before.

Bill: The funk shall be with us. 🙂

​ Mbithi: I think our sound shifts with every album and yeah, this album will definitely have much more live instrumentation in the mix. Just because that’s what we fux with nowadays. And thanks for the comments on the live show! We’re slowly getting to where we want to be as a live act.​

SWL: Halafu hii album inatoka when? Ka-hint angalau…

Bill: Soon yo!

Mbithi: Tulia mtu nguyas…​

Dan: When that good spicy smell starts wafting from the kitchen…

SWL: Lastly, how are y’all winning in life as a band, and individually? What are you giving thanks for?

Mbithi: Coming into our own as individuals. Growing through the ups and downs of life, the gains, the losses and all of that, AND still having friends and family to hold you down kinda leaves you with that life is good feeling.
The love is real.
Man, we’ve been able to see so much of the world through our music and meet great people and just vibe, definitely happy and more confident as an individual as well.
JAB 3
If you find yourself in Jo’Burg towards the end of October, you can catch the guys at the African Futures Festivals. Also, expect a very interesting book on the past, present and Future of Just A Band later this year.
 
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