Yenkyi Taxi

04/06/2019Crudo Volta Teams Up With Hagan In Newish Mini-Doc On The Contemporary Ghanaian Music Scene

Building on the success of their 2016 collaborative short documentary "Woza Taxi" (on the South African club music genre Gqom) Rome's Crudo Volta collective set out on another trip in August 2017 to visit Ghana and produce the follow-up "Yenkyi Taxi", covering the contemporary Ghanaian music scene alongside music producer Hagan.

In the film, Hagan recalls growing up in a Ghanaian home in London, being raised in two cultures, listening to the radio, including stations like Rinse FM, where he first discovered the UK Funky genre. "At one point I realised that this UK funky sound is so similar to music I'd grown up with like Highlife and all the Ghanaian rhythms and all the drums...the drum patterns were very similar. And I felt like it was important to understand, where this has all come from."

Thus, the team flew to Ghana to meet with contemporary producers there, including Gafacci (Akwaaba/Enchufada) and Rvdical The Kid (Soulection / Flow Fi), to find out how they fuse African and electronic music in a culture obsessed with dancing: "You know when you go to France, they have their croissants...In Africa it's dancing, in Ghana especially it's dancing. So the dance thing is what drives me to add these elements into my music," says Gafacci.

However, the team also explores the religious side to Ghanaian music culture, i.e. gospel or church music. "Now we also get a lot of our music from religion," explains Professor (owner of Vivivi Studios). "Some traditional songs have their own rhythms. When you listen to the music that is played at the shrines, the traditional religious places, you get a lot of inspiration from the rhythms. [...] These are rhythms that have remained the same over the years."

You can watch "Yenkyi Taxi" in full via the YouTube video below and make sure to watch "Woza Taxi" as well. In a recent Facebook post, the Crudo Volta crew also announced that the "Taxi" miniseries will continue shortly, covering the music scenes of Addis Ababa, Maputo and Lagos, so stay tuned! Unfortunately for us, the new episodes were produced by Italian streaming platform TimVision and will not be available on YouTube.

AUTHOR: Lev Nordstrom