THEMBA may be a new name to many but the talented South African DJ/producer has enjoyed a meteoric rise in recent years with performances around the world at some of the biggest venues including Hï Ibiza, Zouk Las Vegas and Blue Marlin Ibiza.
Now in the midst of his own Ibiza residency, Colors at Club Chinois in Ibiza, we caught up with him this week and he shared with us a playlist of his ten best African tracks to coincide with his heritage EP release with Zombie feat Fela Kuti & Afrika 70, which was released on September 2nd by Armada Music.
We asked Themba about the music selection he’s curated for us below and he told us:
“These are songs that I feel define the strong roots of Africa and what it means musically to be African, but also push the futuristic frontiers of where Africa is going.”
Listen to Themba’s playlist below and read what he had to say on each track selected.
Themba with Thakzin – Sound Of Freedom
This is one of my records from my debut album Modern Africa. Freedom is still something we fight for in Africa, but from today’s perspective it’s about the fight for freedom of spirit; I think music is the best weapon to express this.
Sun-EL Musicians Feat. Azana – Uhuru (Official Audio)
Sun-EL is an amazing producer from South Africa and he did an amazing job on this album. Uhuru means freedom or independence, and it indicates that in Africa it is not Uhuru yet!
Angelique Kidjo – Agolo (Blanka Mazimela Club Edit)
Living legend Angelique Kidjo commissioned some remixes of her classic Agolo and Blanka Mazimela came to the party and smashed that remix. Take away the vocals and the music is what I call African influenced techno. All round great execution of a remix.
Lakou Mizik & Joseph Ray – Kite Zo A
Amazing use of drums and percussion. This is one of those records I’m jealous I didn’t make. The perfect Afro singalong!
TekniQ – Sons of Africa
Probably one of my favorite records of this year! The song pays homage to some of Africa’s most iconic countries and places.
Ladysmith Black Mambazo – Ayikh’ Indaw’ Enjengekhaya (Henrik Schwarz Rework)
South African Grammy winning act with a remix by Henrik Schwarz. There are few records that I have listened to over and over again this year and admired the execution of the track as a whole.
Fellow DJ and producer Pablo made this record, I freaked out when I first heard it and it has been in my record box ever since! I love the use of afro sounds and beats and the vocals come in and make this record EPIC!
Maz, Luedji Luna – Banho de Folhas (Maz Remix)
Not an African record as such, but this record is a perfect example of where I would like to see Africa go. The sounds are nostalgic, but still very current.
Paul Simon – Diamonds on the soles of her shoes
I recently did an adaptation of this for my DJ sets which will hopefully be ready for an official release soon, but this record speaks of the power of unity between Africa and the rest of the world and I try to instill that spirit in my music embody.
Themba & FNX Omar with Syon – Fragile
The Power of Collaboration; A South African, a Moroccan and a Brit come together to uniquely revive the spirit of Sting. This was one of those records that was musically amazing to me growing up and to be able to reinterpret it in 2022 was a dream come true.
https://www.the-sun.com/entertainment/celebrity/6181751/themba-pushes-the-futuristic-boundaries-of-african-dance-music/ Themba pushes the futuristic boundaries of African dance music