Mapenzi Digital (Digital Love) EP
We are pleased to present the debut EP from Mario Swagga and DJ Silila ‘Mapenzi Digital’ (Digital Love) in collaboration with Danish label PG Sounds.
Mario Swagga and DJ Silila have shaped a truly distinctive and original sound in the emerging genre Singeli which is currently running the streets of Dar es Salaam. A new electronic music genre, Singeli originates at street parties held in Dar es Salaam’s informal settlement. The frantic sound of Singeli is perhaps closest to early jungle but has a uniquely African aesthetic. Created using the computer program Virtual DJ, Singeli is made when DJ’s cut, looped and sped up sections of older Tanzanian recordings, generating their own unique sonic landscape. DJ’s create a soundtrack which typically evolves over an hour of live performance and is accompanied by singers’ and rappers’ freestyle lyrics. Through their reanimation of snippets of Tanzania’s musical past Singeli’s producers creates a distinct Afro-futurist sound.
Mario Swagga and DJ Silila in the studio
Mario Swagga and DJ Silila fuse the unique East African melodies of Taarab with the drums of street genre Mnanda to create a singular sound which combines an electronic aesthetic with the ‘traditional’ sounds of Tanzania. Straight out of Dar es Salaam’s informal settlements Sinegli captures the restless energy and hustle of young peoples lived in this fast-growing metropolis.
This is music to get you moving, as Mario sings in Party La Uhakika (Epic Party)
“Party as hard as you can, party with the vibe, this is an epic party”.
Recording their songs in their studio, which also doubles as DJ Silila’s one room living space Mario and DJ Silila perform at street events across the city. Mario Swagga started performing at street parties all over Dar es Salaam in 2009. He was named Mario by his audience because on stage he possessed some of the same confidence, attitude and swagger as the footballer Mario Balloteli. As his reputation grew Mario began to perform at events organized by Clouds FM and in 2016 was crowned the number one Singeli singer in Dar es Salaam at Fiesta Singeri Michano. Mario’s name has gone on to spread across the city and is now ready to travel even further afield.
EP available on all major platforms here: https://fanlink.to/MapenziDigital
Mario Swagga and DJ Silila are stars on the rise to keep in touch with their development and outputs follow them on Twitter.
Photo credit: Salim Ngunengune.