During these strange times we find ourselves in, Imibala reached out to artists who performed at the Imibala Arts Festival asking them how are they doing and whether they are currently working on any new projects. They shared interesting stories regarding their beginnings with music and how they are staying creative during this worldwide lockdown.
Check out what we have heard from Sam Turpin, a South African rapper, producer and musical artist.
For some, finding passion is a lifetime effort. For some of us it is the influence of what has shaped and surrounded us from an early age. Sometimes it’s an impulse or a strong internal need. Mostly a bit of everything.
Sam: I’ve loved music for a very long time. I grew up mainly on jazz and all kinds of African music that my parents would play at home. I loved hip-hop since I was a child, but there actually was one special moment! When I was 16 I lost a loved one and fell into a very bad depression. After about a year depressed, I remember lying down, and this song just came into my head! So immediately I jumped up and opened a computer to play this music! It eventually became my first single back in 2013 and I’ve been on this journey ever since then!
Sahara Flow is the newest project in cooperation with Jessica Sherman and film director Katya Abedian with a very personal story behind it, release just few days ago, but Sam is already working on new full length project with The Charles Géne Suite.
Sam: Being of Egyptian Jewish heritage, I was always around and loved classical Hebrew and Arabic songs. One day a few years ago, I was attending Synagogue in Johannesburg with my aunty and I heard the choir sing this one prayer and it blew me away. I approached the composer (musician Jessica Sherman) and asked her if I could sample it for a song. She told me that she knew my music already and would be very honoured and obliged to help out – and so Sahara Flow was born. I wrote the lyrics at a point of stagnation in my career and as you can hear I’m getting a lot of frustrations out – but also looking forward to a new path – that is the story of the song! Then for the video I approached the director Katya Abedian in Johannesburg simply because I really love her style! I sent her the song and she liked it – we began to share ideas together and eventually came up with a story that we both felt strongly about – a young man on a spiritual journey, guided only by angels and his own past – me essentially, on my spiritual journey. We shot the film in South Africa in December and I’ve amazed at how people have reacted to it – I’m very grateful! So currently I’m working on my next full length project – as well as on 2 albums – one as my group Cold Chinese Food and the other with my collective The Charles Géne Suite – I’m very excited for those!
You can hear the song and see Sahara Flow here:
Last year we had the pleasure of hosting Sam and seeing his performance on Imibala Arts Festival in Port Elizabeth. We were very happy he made it all way from Johannesburg to Eastern Cape.
Sam: Imibala festival was amazing! I’m so grateful I got to travel and perform right before the Coronavirus began to devastate the world. I was very happy with the crowd response and how welcoming people were. It also humbled me, coming from Johannesburg, to see a vibrant and growing industry of creative people in the Eastern Cape region – usually we think we run things in Jo’burg but it is not the case, we need to wake up to the amazing things happening in other parts of South Africa – not just the largest cities!
We all are experiencing some difficulties nowadays but even now Sam doesn’t lose the spirit and keeps working.
Sam: To be honest I’ve been extremely blessed in this lockdown – I released a new song “Cloud City” with singer Lenny-Dee Doucha and of course we finally released the Sahara Flow film! I was working a lot on that and I’m privileged to still be able to create music in this tough time -I’m working some more on my upcoming projects – every day! Not to say that everything is easy – of course I miss all of my friends, I miss performing and I miss socialising. I miss hugs and I miss experiencing all the different cultures of South Africa and the world. Hopefully one day we will be able to embrace each other again – from chilling in public cafes to partying in clubs! Let’s work in the meantime to defeat this virus – and even if we manage to not let it drain us physically, let us also not let it drain us mentally and emotionally – we artists will keep working!
If you want to hear Sam Turpin live- fingers crossed it will be possible soon- stay updaed and follow him on social media: