Interview with MC MuRli – Rusangano Family – Young Blood – NCH – 18-03-2017
Young Blood At the National Concert Hall – 18-03-2017 20:00
Featuring – Abby Oliveira, Colm Keegan, Felispeaks, Hare Squead, John Cummins, Katie Laffan, Kojey Radical (UK), Natalya O’Flaherty, The Rusangano Family, Sarah Clancy, Stephen James Smith
As part of the St. Patrick’s Festival, there is a gig at the National Concert Hall displaying the best in Irish Hip-hop! Names such as Hare Squead and the Rusangano Family will be performing. We had the chance to talk to MC MuRli of the Rusangano Family about the music he listened to during his teenage years and also the Young Blood event. You can see the results below…
What were the albums that made you realise you loved music during your teenage years and why did you fall in love with them?
The year is 2004. It was around then that I first truly consider becoming a musician. It’s all down to the fact that I listened to so many albums that year. My father’s favourite artist is Koffi Olomide from the DR Congo and his songs were always on in our house but one album in particular, ‘Monde Arabe’ seemed to be on all the time. I was into dancing a lot back then so I’d throw on the DVD and try to imitate the dancers. Each song was about ten minutes long and had at least 3 changes of rhythm. I just loved how vibrant the music was and there were so many things happening at the same but it worked. Then I got a copy of ‘701′ by Usher off a friend of mine from school. This was 3 years after it was released but I loved that album so much. I had one of those portable CD players at the time and I was listening and singing along to this album pretty much everyday on my way to school. I didn’t care if it wasn’t cool, I’d be dancing and singing in the hall at Basketball training. I was very much into R&B and I thought that album was a classic. ‘College Dropout’ by Kanye West was my most important discovery that year though. It changed my perception of what a rap album was meant to sound like. For me, and quite possibly many of my generation, Kanye was a bridge between what was known as ‘backpack rap’ and the mainstream rap. It was a gateway to rap music for me. I wrote my very first bars to that album.
Have you ever performed in the National Concert Hall before? Did you ever think you would?
No, we have never performed in the National Concert Hall. To be honest, with the type of music we make, it wasn’t something I had envisaged, maybe out of ignorance but that being said, with Rusangano Family you can never rule out any venue. So while I wasn’t expecting it, I’m still not surprised that we’re playing there for Young Blood. Shout out to the organisers for making that possible though. We’re all really excited for it and I’m certain this will not be the last time you see us there.
This gig is a great addition to the St Patrick’s festival. Do you know many of the other performers personally?
We’ve met some of the other performers at other shows so while we haven’t grown up together or anything like that, I can say we know, or know of each other. Take Hare Squead for instance, we’ve been on a couple of bills with them in the past and they’re cool dudes. Stephen James Smith is a real dude too. We hung out in Dingle at Other Voices and he’s great craic. I’m sure it’s going to be a family affair on the night and we’re looking forward to meeting those we don’t know yet.
Irish hip hop continues to grow every year. What new performers would you recommend our listeners to check out?
It’s true that Hip Hop in Ireland is really growing and changing perceptions along the way. There are many acts I would recommend but off the top right now, I can suggest Same D4ence and Jonen DeKay from Limerick, and Jafaris who just dropped a hot single ‘Love Dies’ which I’m loving right now.
Kojaque has been turning heads for a while now as well and Young Phantom. I’d also recommend these two young producers, Nxstalgic and Mankyy. they’ll blow you away. The scene is healthy right now and the only thing I’d like to see more of is female emcees. It’s only a matter of time though.