portrait image of Black Coffee

Black Coffee

Last Night a DJ Saved My Life

 

A name I’ve known for some years now, Black Coffee is in many ways the original pioneering of South African house music. His reputation as the break through man, a Defected Records regular, Red Bull Music Academy participant and press darling. Yet I’ll be honest I have one track of his in my crates and know virtually nothing about him, his work and what his mission is so welcome to my education. Welcome Black Coffee to the UM House Blog.

 

So what’s the Black Coffee sound?

For me, it spans Afro-rhythms and vocal house with a dash of pop lightness to it. Stand out track for me in the top tracks on Spotify is the soaring piano cinematic feast that is Muye (Black Coffee Remix). There’s some stunning vocal tracks like Stuck In Your Love feat’ Azola and on Raplg Gums GOGO label Turn Me On. A quick flick through the tracks in his discography and you’ll see names like Charles Webster, Henrik Schwarz, Boddhi Satva, Manoo and plenty more goodness. It’s addictive listening, light, rhythmic, if you like your vocals then this is a winner playlist for you.

 

What’s the Black Coffee story?

A Jazz Studeis major at Technikon Natal now Durban University of Technology he also worked as a backing singer for Madala Kuene with schoolmates Mnqobi Mdabe (Shota) and Thandukwazi Sikhosana (Demor) who later went on to form the Afro-pop tri called SHANA (Simply Hot and Naturally African) which was signed to Melt 2000. His reason for studying music was because he felt that as a producer, he had to deepen his overall musical knowledge, develop his listening skills and advance his knowledge of music theory.

 

From here Black Coffee was picked as one of two South African participants in the Red Bull Music Academy in 2003, jump-starting him into the South African dance music scene. His first big break was when his song "Happiness" was featured on the DJs at Work album.

 

A read through his RA profile is quite a read, for example… “No matter how he is seen he remains one of the very few club DJs in the country who genuinely understands the precise function of a music disc jockey: he does not simply mix songs, he re-interprets their previously unimagined musical possibilities, adapting and arranging as each work advises and so quietly creating new works that give life.” As with many South African artists, the connection to a spiritual element in the music is key to his purpose and something that comes through strong in the research I’ve done.

 

Black Coffee announced his arrival in 2005, with a remix of Hugh Masekela's 1972 hit Stimela before going on to release the self-titled album featuring collaborations with Thandiswa Mazwai, Hugh Masekela, Busi Mhlongo and more. As I’ve often read of new South African producers, th album, "Black Coffee" was created using very basic music-making software. "I don't know how to explain the production stages of my album because all I did was put down the basic ideas that I had, I didn't use any MIDI controllers everything was played with a computer mouse". He is quoted as saying.

 

By 2007, Black Coffee was more recognized in the South African DJ scene for his blend of tribal, vocal-laced beats. In the same year he released his second studio album titled "Have Another One”. The twelve-track album featured the likes of Siphokazi, Busi Mhlongo, and kwaito sensation L'vovo. He then got the big international break, performing at the Red Bull Music Academy Lounge at the Sonar Festival in Barcelona, alongside recognized DJs such as Little Louie Vega, Alix Alvarez, Franck Roger, Charles Webster, DJ Spinna and Osunlade. In 2009, Black Coffee released his third album, ‘’Home Brewed’’, featuring Ringo Madlingozi, Zonke, Hugh Masekela, Zakes Bantwini and more. And later in 2013, he performed at Southport Weekender.

His fifth album Pieces Of Me in 2015 went platinum in South Africa in October of that year with him ranking 91st  on Resident Advisor's top 100 DJ's list in 2016 and then things went big with releases with Drake, Guetta and Usher following between then and 2019.

 

Fun fact…. In 2010, Black Coffee was inducted in the Guinness Book of World Records when he Dj’d 60 hours non-stop at Maponya Mall. (That is a long time….!).

 

 

More like this

portrait image of Black Coffee
portrait image of Black Coffee
portrait image of Black Coffee

Black Coffee

Last Night a DJ Saved My Life

 

A name I’ve known for some years now, Black Coffee is in many ways the original pioneering of South African house music. His reputation as the break through man, a Defected Records regular, Red Bull Music Academy participant and press darling. Yet I’ll be honest I have one track of his in my crates and know virtually nothing about him, his work and what his mission is so welcome to my education. Welcome Black Coffee to the UM House Blog.

 

So what’s the Black Coffee sound?

For me, it spans Afro-rhythms and vocal house with a dash of pop lightness to it. Stand out track for me in the top tracks on Spotify is the soaring piano cinematic feast that is Muye (Black Coffee Remix). There’s some stunning vocal tracks like Stuck In Your Love feat’ Azola and on Raplg Gums GOGO label Turn Me On. A quick flick through the tracks in his discography and you’ll see names like Charles Webster, Henrik Schwarz, Boddhi Satva, Manoo and plenty more goodness. It’s addictive listening, light, rhythmic, if you like your vocals then this is a winner playlist for you.

 

What’s the Black Coffee story?

A Jazz Studeis major at Technikon Natal now Durban University of Technology he also worked as a backing singer for Madala Kuene with schoolmates Mnqobi Mdabe (Shota) and Thandukwazi Sikhosana (Demor) who later went on to form the Afro-pop tri called SHANA (Simply Hot and Naturally African) which was signed to Melt 2000. His reason for studying music was because he felt that as a producer, he had to deepen his overall musical knowledge, develop his listening skills and advance his knowledge of music theory.

 

From here Black Coffee was picked as one of two South African participants in the Red Bull Music Academy in 2003, jump-starting him into the South African dance music scene. His first big break was when his song "Happiness" was featured on the DJs at Work album.

 

A read through his RA profile is quite a read, for example… “No matter how he is seen he remains one of the very few club DJs in the country who genuinely understands the precise function of a music disc jockey: he does not simply mix songs, he re-interprets their previously unimagined musical possibilities, adapting and arranging as each work advises and so quietly creating new works that give life.” As with many South African artists, the connection to a spiritual element in the music is key to his purpose and something that comes through strong in the research I’ve done.

 

Black Coffee announced his arrival in 2005, with a remix of Hugh Masekela's 1972 hit Stimela before going on to release the self-titled album featuring collaborations with Thandiswa Mazwai, Hugh Masekela, Busi Mhlongo and more. As I’ve often read of new South African producers, th album, "Black Coffee" was created using very basic music-making software. "I don't know how to explain the production stages of my album because all I did was put down the basic ideas that I had, I didn't use any MIDI controllers everything was played with a computer mouse". He is quoted as saying.

 

By 2007, Black Coffee was more recognized in the South African DJ scene for his blend of tribal, vocal-laced beats. In the same year he released his second studio album titled "Have Another One”. The twelve-track album featured the likes of Siphokazi, Busi Mhlongo, and kwaito sensation L'vovo. He then got the big international break, performing at the Red Bull Music Academy Lounge at the Sonar Festival in Barcelona, alongside recognized DJs such as Little Louie Vega, Alix Alvarez, Franck Roger, Charles Webster, DJ Spinna and Osunlade. In 2009, Black Coffee released his third album, ‘’Home Brewed’’, featuring Ringo Madlingozi, Zonke, Hugh Masekela, Zakes Bantwini and more. And later in 2013, he performed at Southport Weekender.

His fifth album Pieces Of Me in 2015 went platinum in South Africa in October of that year with him ranking 91st  on Resident Advisor's top 100 DJ's list in 2016 and then things went big with releases with Drake, Guetta and Usher following between then and 2019.

 

Fun fact…. In 2010, Black Coffee was inducted in the Guinness Book of World Records when he Dj’d 60 hours non-stop at Maponya Mall. (That is a long time….!).

 

 

portrait image of Black Coffee
portrait image of Black Coffee

Black Coffee

Last Night a DJ Saved My Life

 

A name I’ve known for some years now, Black Coffee is in many ways the original pioneering of South African house music. His reputation as the break through man, a Defected Records regular, Red Bull Music Academy participant and press darling. Yet I’ll be honest I have one track of his in my crates and know virtually nothing about him, his work and what his mission is so welcome to my education. Welcome Black Coffee to the UM House Blog.

 

So what’s the Black Coffee sound?

For me, it spans Afro-rhythms and vocal house with a dash of pop lightness to it. Stand out track for me in the top tracks on Spotify is the soaring piano cinematic feast that is Muye (Black Coffee Remix). There’s some stunning vocal tracks like Stuck In Your Love feat’ Azola and on Raplg Gums GOGO label Turn Me On. A quick flick through the tracks in his discography and you’ll see names like Charles Webster, Henrik Schwarz, Boddhi Satva, Manoo and plenty more goodness. It’s addictive listening, light, rhythmic, if you like your vocals then this is a winner playlist for you.

 

What’s the Black Coffee story?

A Jazz Studeis major at Technikon Natal now Durban University of Technology he also worked as a backing singer for Madala Kuene with schoolmates Mnqobi Mdabe (Shota) and Thandukwazi Sikhosana (Demor) who later went on to form the Afro-pop tri called SHANA (Simply Hot and Naturally African) which was signed to Melt 2000. His reason for studying music was because he felt that as a producer, he had to deepen his overall musical knowledge, develop his listening skills and advance his knowledge of music theory.

 

From here Black Coffee was picked as one of two South African participants in the Red Bull Music Academy in 2003, jump-starting him into the South African dance music scene. His first big break was when his song "Happiness" was featured on the DJs at Work album.

 

A read through his RA profile is quite a read, for example… “No matter how he is seen he remains one of the very few club DJs in the country who genuinely understands the precise function of a music disc jockey: he does not simply mix songs, he re-interprets their previously unimagined musical possibilities, adapting and arranging as each work advises and so quietly creating new works that give life.” As with many South African artists, the connection to a spiritual element in the music is key to his purpose and something that comes through strong in the research I’ve done.

 

Black Coffee announced his arrival in 2005, with a remix of Hugh Masekela's 1972 hit Stimela before going on to release the self-titled album featuring collaborations with Thandiswa Mazwai, Hugh Masekela, Busi Mhlongo and more. As I’ve often read of new South African producers, th album, "Black Coffee" was created using very basic music-making software. "I don't know how to explain the production stages of my album because all I did was put down the basic ideas that I had, I didn't use any MIDI controllers everything was played with a computer mouse". He is quoted as saying.

 

By 2007, Black Coffee was more recognized in the South African DJ scene for his blend of tribal, vocal-laced beats. In the same year he released his second studio album titled "Have Another One”. The twelve-track album featured the likes of Siphokazi, Busi Mhlongo, and kwaito sensation L'vovo. He then got the big international break, performing at the Red Bull Music Academy Lounge at the Sonar Festival in Barcelona, alongside recognized DJs such as Little Louie Vega, Alix Alvarez, Franck Roger, Charles Webster, DJ Spinna and Osunlade. In 2009, Black Coffee released his third album, ‘’Home Brewed’’, featuring Ringo Madlingozi, Zonke, Hugh Masekela, Zakes Bantwini and more. And later in 2013, he performed at Southport Weekender.

His fifth album Pieces Of Me in 2015 went platinum in South Africa in October of that year with him ranking 91st  on Resident Advisor's top 100 DJ's list in 2016 and then things went big with releases with Drake, Guetta and Usher following between then and 2019.

 

Fun fact…. In 2010, Black Coffee was inducted in the Guinness Book of World Records when he Dj’d 60 hours non-stop at Maponya Mall. (That is a long time….!).

 

 

portrait image of Black Coffee