The name Mawimbi is no longer unknown to you, you came to see its members in bars, at festivals or maybe recently at the Quai Branly Museum to celebrate the Night of Museums. It is a true community that the collective talent has asasembled to bring together electronic music with shades inspired by African and Oceanic cultures.
You had the chance to meet and Clement Bertrand, a collective duo “Magic Power” to discuss a little with them, on this enchanting interbreeding that represents the Mawimbi universe.
– HOW DID YOU MEET EACH OTHER?
– We met on Myspace almost five years ago. We both had a distinct musical project, we met around a remix and decided to create a few weeks later the “Magic Power” duet.
-WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR WISH TO FOLLOW MUSIC?
-We swim in it since our child hood.
Bertrand: ” When little, I always liked to play music in family parties, I was having fun mixing between two CDs. Later, I began to make “mixtapes” cassette titles based on what I heard on the radio …”
Clement : “I have always been amazed by the idea of the ” spectacle ” of broadcasting. Associating pictures and sounds seems to be evidence to me. I started with video and special effects that have become my current job then quickly since high school I started to tweak a few pieces.
– WHY “MAGIC POWER”?
— We wanted a short name, easy to remember and fairly broad. Magic power is both a reference to shamanism but also a kind of duality between words connoting the power and magic…. We also find the music itself magical. It allows people to connect, to feel a physical sensation of a good sound system, to develop imagination and emotion to listen to a song.
– HOW DID YOU MANAGE TO INTEGRATE THE COLLECTIVE MAWIMBI?
– Mawimbi is more than a collective and record label, it’s a bunch of friends, we’ve all known each other for years. The desire to work together allows us to gather around a conductor wire (” afro ” in the broad sense) that speaks to all. We were already exploring the mixing of sounds in Magic Power. As with our friends, we saw that there was a real passion between us around these musical worlds, we decided to do something. Today, two years later, things have changed, but we keep this family spirit, on stage or off stage.
– WHY DOES MUSIC HAVE THE “TRIBAL” INSPIRATION ESPECIALLY?
– How and why? We do not really know. What is certain is that it has not sought to do that by one way or another. This music speaks to us, this music has a soul , this music is warm, this music is emotionally charged and danced by anyone.
– WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
Clement: “During production, I was soon fascinated by the quality of the pieces of electronic Modeselektor / Moderat. The feeling is powerful and has an intense beat. I also remember with Vitalic, there were some songs where the snare sounded very warrior. I usually like when it sounds “epic”. The music in the movies or series also brings a lot to me. I think a guy like Bear McCreary would get very old instruments to compose his music. For the rest, I listen to a lot of traditional musicians, especially drummers who transmit their knowledge generation to generation (The Griots) . The groove is very important to us in a song because our music is destined to make the body and mind dance.
– WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE MEMORY?
– Our stay at Electropicales on Reunion Island will remain forever engraved in our minds, it was magical !
– HOW DO YOU PRODUCE YOURSELVES?
– Clement is the only one to produce. At home he has a home studio with a midi keyboard, Ableton , but especially a lot of percussions that will start to recover to the right and left. Bertrand takes care of another part of the music just as important so that we know the “com” and “business” side. For the DJ sets we get together to give a guideline. Bertrand will prepare well in advance and we’ll finalize together.
– YOUR UPCOMING PROJECTS?
– In late May, Clement finally turns the clip he has been preparing for two years now! It will accompany an upcoming ep coming out with our label.
– In early July, we will record Senegalese Sabar musicians who are coming to Dakar for the humanitarian project Kaani. It is very emotional to think that our music does not serve a public in a club but to something more concrete. The goal is to socialize the suburbs of Dakar via culture. The money raised will also be used to clean a lot of waste that pollute the landscape.
– THE DREAM THAT YOU WISH TO ACHIEVE?
– The dream is well underway, we live very beautiful things that we never thought we would reach. Although we are aware that all this can stop overnight, we would like our approach to be professionalized through a real live show for the Mawimbi Crew and the artistic development for the Mawimbi label.
– WHAT WOULD BE THE QUOTE THAT COULD GUIDE YOU IN LIFE?
We have this philosophy that we must become even stronger when life puts sticks in the wheels.
We must be able to project, to say that if a bad thing happened to you at a certain moment it’s not for nothing. You will do better next time or you will live differently, and be stronger. It is to believe in your fate but also to control it. You fixed yourself a very high goal, you do everything to get there. If you do things right, even if you have not reached your goal exactly, you will still live great experiences.