Interview with Antoine Bruy in Huck

More than happy to have written the cover story for the latest edition of Huck magazine (issue #58). For the article I interviewed French photographer Antoine Bruy about his Scrublands photo essay.

Scrublands was an idea of Bruy’s to go and stay with people who have chosen to live off-grid, often leaving behind decent jobs and the city, in search of a more peaceful and self-fulfilling lifestyle. To do this, intriguingly he used WWOOF as a way of volunteering at various farms that were being run by people who had moved out of the city.

The photos are quite extraordinary and definitely worth a look.

You can check out the latest issue of Huck at huckmagazine.com/art-and-culture/print/huck-58-offline-issue

Sounds and Colours Argentina Released

I’m very happy to announce that the fourth Sounds and Colours publication is now here. This one focused on Argentine culture, with lots of great articles about underground movements and influential artists, as well as original illustrations, comics and photo essays. As with previous publications I was the editor and worked with a great team of contributors from all over the world putting this one together, our own cultural guide to Argentina.

You can find out more about the book at soundsandcolours.com/issues/sounds-and-colours-argentina

Interview with Elza Soares in The Wire

The Wire published an interview I made with Elza Soares in one of their latest issues, #393. Elza, who’s now 79 years old, was one of the hardest people I’ve interviewed, largely because she distrusts the press (as the Brazilian press have been horrible to her over the years).

However, through my interview and through additional interviews I made with musicians who played on her last album, The Woman At The End of the World, I think I managed to put together a really strong piece. If you want to know why people are so blown away by her latest release, then have a listen to this:

Laura Esquivel Q&A in London

So last week (Wednesday 26th October) we launched a night that could become a regular thing in London. It was our first collaboration with Battersea Spanish and Doodle Bar for an evening intended to transport everyone to Mexico, and it was a huge success with the event being sold out and everyone seeming to have a great time. Fitting in with the Mexico theme we screened the classic film Like Water for Chocolate, served up some really nice Mexican food via the street food caterers Tamales, played some Mexican tunes and topped it all off with a Skype Q&A with the film’s author Laura Esquivel, which went down a storm with the crowd (there’s a shot from the Q&A below). It was a great night, and hopefully we’ll get the chance to repeat it soon.

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Stephanie from Battersea wrote a really nice blog post about the event which you can read here.

Songlines Tour of Colombia

I recently got asked at very short notice (well two days notice to be precise) if I could lead a musical tour around Colombia for Songlines. The answer was of course “yes!” so from September 12th until the 22nd this year I was in Colombia, passing through Bogotá, Medellín and Cartagena with a group of six Songlines readers on a journey into Colombian music. It was a great trip with time spent in San Basilio de Palenque (discovering the first free slave community in Latin America), Merlin Productions (THE production house in Medellín these days, home to Puerta Candelaria and Maite Hontelé), Matik-Matik (where Mario Galeano gave an expert talk on the history of Colombian music), Plaza de Bolivar in Cartagena (a great place for watching cumbia and mapalé on the streets), on a graffiti tour of Comuna 13 in Medellín (thoroughly recommended) and a whole lot more.

Hopefully Songlines will be running another similar tour in 2017. Fingers crossed for that one. If you want to find out more about the last tour have a look at songlines.co.uk/music-travel/tours-festivals-2016/colombia.php. And if you have any questions about how this one went feel free to give me a buzz.

Here’s a photo from the trip, which is the group with Rafael Cassiani (Sexteto Tabalá) and Justo Valdez (Son Palenque):
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Cameo on BBC Radio 1’s Rap in Rio with DJ Semtex

Hey, so recently I was interviewed by BBC Radio 1 for a special they were doing on hip-hop in Rio de Janeiro. You can listen to the show at bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07mvwnc. I feature in the first 20 minutes discussing how rap got big in Rio and also sharing some knowledge on Gabriel O Pensador, one of the first rappers from Rio to make an impact both nationally and in Portugal.

Writing and Editing by Latin American music expert Russell Slater