[interview] Kid Fonque – Maribou State Cape Town/Johannesburg

[interview] Kid Fonque - Maribou State Cape Town/Johannesburg _ Photo Credit: Sean McLoed

Kid Fonque has become a vital part of South African electronic music and club culture over the last 20 years. Uniquely accomplished in both influence and scope, he is an over-achiever in every one of his roles; DJ, Producer Label Owner, promoter and more recently, Radio Presenter.

Firmly established as a tastemaker in South Africa, Kid Fonque’s influence can be felt and heard in the music of the many artists he has helped nurture with his role as label manager of Africa’s seminal dance label Soul Candi Records and now his new venture with Jullian Gomes in their new label Stay True Sounds.

Kid Fonque’s talent is the type that refuses to acknowledge boundaries of any kind – be they genres or borders. The respect he is paid by the industry is a result of his no compromise attitude to playing and making music. Rather than following trends, Kid Fonque has always done things his own way. Importantly, every record he reaches for bares all the hallmarks of the Kid Fonque sound – a golden thread that ties all his sets together somehow.

Like a painter dabbing his brush into different hues, Fonque’s palette embraces everything from bass and broken beats to bossa nova, hip hop and every shade of house – and with this open-minded approach, he’s been deconstructing dancefloors at home and abroad for well over a decade. Over the last couple years he’s played dates in Hong Kong, Dubai, the UK and Switzerland.

Kid Fonque has just recently started his own radio show called Selective Styles on South Africa’s very own 5FM. Selective Styles has given Kid the platform to showcase the hidden talent from all over South Africa electronic, house, soul & Hip Hop Community while delving into international releases weekly.

In 2011, Kid Fonque launched his long-running monthly night, #2SIDESOFTHEBEAT as a platform to showcase underground music from all genres at the same venue. Dubstep and house rubs shoulders with hip hop, broken beat and everything in between. Kid Fonque handpicks the line-up which has seen esteemed musos like Dego, King Britt, Swindle, Mala, Nightmares On Wax, Zaki Ibrahim and local stars like Jullian Gomes, Cuebur, Kenzhero and The Brother Moves On all on one stage.

In 2014 Kid Fonque moved into the producer’s chair and released his critically acclaimed debut artist album Kid Fonque and Friends and a string of remixes.

Two singles from the album “BE”, “Usangikhumbula” and a recent collaboration with D-Malice “All This Time” did serious damage in the charts – all claiming the number 1 spot on the YFM Urban Top 20. His recent studio output has paired him with luminaries like Clara Hill, Mark de Clive-Lowe, Nia Andrews, Jonny Miller, Kev Brown, Okmalumkoolkat and Atjazz.

2016 has been music as usual and the year started with a Boiler Room set where he was asked to represent his newfound label ‘Stay True Sounds’ and got to share the platform with label partner Jullian Gomes with a back-to-back set recorded and played in Cape Town’s Langa.

2017 sees plenty of new projects on the horizon for Fonque including a full length collaboration with UK’s D-Malice under the alias rkls due for release on r2 London which features a rich and varied cast of artists including Kev Brown, Melo B Jones, Sio, John Robinson and many more.

Whether he’s behind the decks, running Stay True Sounds, preparing for his weekly radio show or in studio making otherworldly music, Kid Fonque’s sonic adventures continue to fill dance floors and thrill earholes, pay attention!

[ticket giveaway] MARIBOU STATE Live In South Africa - CPT & JHB Shows

Tour Dates: 

Date: Friday, 8 December 2017
Venue: Mercury Live Lounge
Entrance: R250
Time: 8PM
Bookings: http://bit.ly/2yIY8Te
Line-Up: Felix Laband, Christian Tiger School, PHFat, Akio, DJ Lag, Kidfonque, Nonku Phiri, P-Kuttah

Date: Saturday, 9 December 2017
Venue: The Good Luck Bar, Johannesburg
Entrance: R250
Time: 8PM
Bookings: http://bit.ly/2yL3Fsv
Line-Up: Felix Laband, Christian Tiger School, PHFat, Akio, DJ Lag, Kidfonque, Nonku Phiri, P-Kuttah

Interview: KID FONQUE
[interview] Kid Fonque - Maribou State Cape Town/Johannesburg _ Photo Credit: Sean McLoed
MA: Hey Allan, Good to be chatting to you brother. You well?.

All good thanks!

MA: Would you please give us a short 101 on who Kid Fonque the artist, musician is? Where in sunny SA do you come from? 

I am from Johannesburg, been Dj’ing for over 20 years.  I love music, i love discovering music.  Music is my all day everyday, from making it, to signing it and finding it for my show Selective Styles on national radio station 5FM.  I guess the best way to describe what i do is to say i am always digging and showcasing what i think is the finest in underground music, i cover it all,  Hip-Hop, Soul, House.

MA: Was music always an influence growing up? What genre of music did you grow up to?

I was brought up in a household filled with music, my dad was into everything from Vivaldi to Neil Young and Digable Planets. Being around all of this music definitely helped mold my taste in music today.

MA: Can you give us a short background on the name Kid Fonque?

I really got into a project by Saxophonist Branford Marsalis when growing up called ‘Buckshot Le Fonque’ where he would create albums under this alias and make loads of new styles, Neo Soul, Drum & Bass, House, Hip Hop with a jazz tip.  That thinking really resonated with me, being able to cover it all so i adopted the Fonque from there and the ‘Kid’ got added after.

MA: How would you describe you music selection in 5 words?

Fresh, Soulful, Timeless, Unheard & uncategorizable.

MA: I follow your radio show, Selective Styles (5FM), which has brought something so fresh to the radio. How has the response to the show and to your brand been over the past years or so? 

Amazing, still pinch myself that i have a platform to showcase all this unheard music.  Response has been incredible too. Seems a lot of people are keen to hear and find new things out there which is really exciting.

MA: What are some of your aspirations and goals for the show?

Always make sure I play it first, get in-depth interviews with up & coming talent & break artists & music that need to be heard.

MA: What are your thoughts on our local music scene at the moment, especially targeted at your market? Is there anything you wish to see happen differently?

We are at a really special place locally with music.  So many bedroom producers are making music of the highest standard, not commercial, just really good interesting, soulful music. Every week i get so many great songs sent to me that i get to spin in my sets and on 5FM.

MA: Are there any local acts that you think need a special mention?

So many, but Daev Martian is the next thing, Dwson, Fka Mash, Escapism Refuge, Sio, Dunn Kidda.  The list goes on & on.

[ticket giveaway] MARIBOU STATE Live In South Africa - CPT & JHB Shows
MA: You are on a super impressive bill for the MARIBOU STATE Live events going down in SA this year. Are you as excited as we are for this one? What can we expect from your set at the gigs? 

Yup love MS music, we got into them in a big way 2 years back so stoked to be supporting. Im not 100% sure what will come out that bag but we definitely gonna have fun.

MA: Anything that you are currently working on that we would be interested in hearing about? 

Ah so much, I got a hop-hop & soul album i made with good friend D-Malice coming out on r2 records early next year under our rkls alias, new single with Khensy coming out on the 17th of November, new house & broken beat music next year & lots of new stuff from my label Stay True Sounds.

MA: Where can we follow you on Social media? 

Kid Fonque on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Soundcloud

*** Photo Credit: Sean McLoed

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