I’ve always admired good djs and their ability to create different moods with their music selection. As a club dancer, for me, the Dj is very important. It is the dj’s track selection and mixing that excites me to dance. My energy and my ability to be in a musical trance is directly tied to what the Dj is playing. And for that reason If the dj is not delivering, I’m not motivated to dance. Like the drummer directing the dancer in traditional African dance, the dj for me has a similar purpose.
And while I love high intense music that excites me to dance, I can also appreciate soulful melodic deep groves. Have you ever been hit by the music and just sway in musical bliss ? This is exactly how I feel when I listen to Groove Cartel. The YouTube Channel has become a favorite of mine with its easy and mellow Amapiano and South African house groves. The channel has allowed me to dig deeper into South African electronic music, and explore the diversity of Amapiano.
I had the pleasure of connecting with Groove Cartel to learn more about the channel and their mission:
AFROCONEX: Groove Cartel, thank you for taking the time to talk with AfroConex. We are big fans of the channel and talent you showcase. When was Groove cartel started and what is the mission of platform ?
GROOVE CARTEL: Groove Cartel was started in 2021 by individuals who have different expertise within the creative space. Our philosophy/mission is to bring people closer to artists both known and unknown
AFROCONEX: What type of music can people discover on Groove Cartel ?
GROOVE CARTEL: As a brand that seeks to represent street culture, our platform features mainly dance music, with a great representation of the Amapiano genre due to its popularity both locally and internationally.
AFROCONEX: Many of us love South African dance music, but are unfamiliar with the categories of sounds in South Africa. Can you help o breakdown the various genres of South African dance music ?
GROOVE CARTEL: The dance music scene can be broken down into two main categories. One being House music, which has been a mainstay genre and originally imported from the US and the second being Kwaito which is a home brewed genre.
These two main categories then fused into what we now have come to know as Amapiano. Therefore, one simply cannot ignore Amapiano’s house origins, however it can be defined as a new sound because it has fused elements from both Kwaito and House music.
Amapiano then brought forth sub genres, such as Sgija which is a hard, upbeat bass driven sound and Private school, a more soulful, melodic interpretation of Amapiano. Both have the log drum as their foundation.
Another popular dance genre in South Africa is gqom. It remains a staple on many dance floors across the country and internationally too. Like Kwaito and Amapiano it also shares its origins with house music although it relies heavily on electronic sounds.
AFROCONEX: The world has discovered and fell inlove with South African Amapiano, why do you think Amapiano has been so well received ?
GROOVE CARTEL: Simply put Amapiano is well received because of its honesty. It represents a story of black South African youth who have chosen to turn their frustrations and transform it to something positive. This is what makes it resonate with people worldwide, from the streets of South African townships (projects) to rooftop bars in Miami.
AFROCONEX: Who are some of the standout mixes from 2022 ?
GROOVE CARTEL: It really is hard to say which particular mix stands out, because both the unknown and known Djs have shown remarkable popularity on the platform.
AFROCONEX: The new season of Groove Cartel started in February 2023, what can we expect this year from the platform ?
GROOVE CARTEL: We wish to continue with our philosophy to bring people closer to the artists both know and unknown, but we also want to include more vocalist and bands who also contribute to music overall.
Be sure to follow groove cartel on IG and Youtube, and dive into the beautiful amapiano sounds coming out of South Africa.
Check out these three amazing mixes from Groove Cartel that h:
Groove Cartel Presents Tumza D’Kota
Groove Cartel Presents the Lowkeys
Groove Cartel presents DJ Obza
Be sure to follow groove cartel on IG (@groovecartelsa) and Youtube (Groove Cartel_SA) and dive into the beautiful amapiano sounds coming out of South Africa.