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DJ Raiko Lays Down Cuts for Flêtse Maniere

We just got back from a nice session at Hipe’s studio in Ravensmead. DJ Raiko was laying down cuts for Jaak’s forthcoming album, Hipe Presents: Flêtse Maniere.

The album is currently in the final stages of post-production and will showcase the talent of one of South Africa’s most lyrical Afrikaans emcees alongside one of South Africa’s dopest producers.

We’ll update you with release dates as soon as we have them fixed. Keep it locked!

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Jaak and Hipe (Click photo for larger version)

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The Unit at work (Click photo for larger version)

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Hipe vinyl (Click photo for larger version)

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Jaak, Hipe and Raiko (Click photo for larger version)

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Jaak and Da Bo$$ share a joke (Click photo for larger version)

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Raiko in the cut (Click photo for larger version)

Click here for full set (8) of photos on Flickr

That’s how we rrrrrrroll!!

Ben Sharpa Collaborations

May 21, 2009 In Studio No Comments

Ben Sharpa Recording

Ben Sharpa Recording

Sorry we’ve been quiet for a while, but you know that just means we’re working hard, right?

After his massively successful tour of France last month, Ben Sharpa came down to Cape Town this week for some meetings. He also got in the studio for some major international collaborations.

These collabs have been a long time coming so we’re really excited. With our very own super-producer, Hipe, on production you already know the tracks are banging!

The first collaboration is with Puerto Rican Hip Hop artist, Siete Nueve. On working with Sharpa he said, “It’s real good to connect PR to the Motherland. I’m a protector of our Afro-Caribbean culture and it’s very important to create a bridge to hip-hop as it is universal.”

The second collaborator is probably more well know on the African continent, Nigeria’s most deadly emcee, Mode9.

Keep it locked for more info about these tracks.

Check out Ben Sharpa on Myspace

Check out Siete Nueve on Myspace

Check out Mode9 on Myspace

That’s how we rrrrrrrrrrrroll!!

Lungelo in Studio to Record Feature for Rattex

The one and only Lungelo dropped by the studio a few days ago to record a feature for Rattex. Not surprisingly, he killed the track with a typically powerful hook.

I’ve always believed Lungelo was going to be a big star since I first met him in 2004. His career has gone from strength to strength, especially after moving to Johannesburg. He’s making major moves at the moment and you are sure to be hearing a lot more from him in the near future.

We’re just happy to have got him on a track that will make Cape Town proud.

Lungelo in Session

Lungelo in Session

Lungelo in Session

Lungelo in Session

Check out Lungelo on Myspace

That’s how we rrrrrrrroll!!

Wordsworth in Studio to record track with Ben Sharpa

Legendary Brooklyn-bred Lyricist Lounge all-star Wordsworth was in Cape Town for one night last Thursday. He was down here to perform alongside Ben Sharpa and Rattex at The Assembly. You know how we roll, we couldn’t just let the opportunity pass us by so we had to get Words on a track with our very own Ben Sharpa.

It all started last week when Sharpa gave me a call to say that Words was down to put in work if we could find the right beat. Sharpa also said that we’d only have an hour or so with Words because of his other commitments.

I prepared a selection of 12 beats that I thought would be appropriate. When Wordsworth, Sharpa and DJ Raiko came to the studio we got straight down to business. After listening to 6 tracks, Words chose a beat and immediately started writing.

Within half an hour, Words had written the verse and come up with a concept for the hook. Getting straight on the mic, Words did 3 run-throughs and the verse was laid down. Needless to say, the track was sounding dope, but time was running out and we needed to get to the sound check, followed by the Red Bull Academy workshop (where Words was speaking) so we had to bounce.

I was worried that we weren’t going to have time to finish the track, but Words assured me that he was down to finish no matter what. We decided it would be better to try and finish the track between the Red Bull Academy session and the start of his set at The Assembly.

The Red Bull Academy session ran over time so I was getting worried that we weren’t going to have time to record. We rushed back to the studio after Words had finished talking. As soon as I turned on the light the power went off. Luckily it wasn’t Eskom tripping, it was only the fuse box. Words finished the hook and the intro in plenty of time to get to the show. We also managed to shoot video of Words recording so we’ll have footage for the full video.

It was a real honour to work with Words. When I think about who he has worked with – Masta Ace, Da Beatminerz, Ayatollah, A Tribe Called Quest, Nicolay – I feel even more blessed.

Keep it locked to PioneerUnit.com for more information about the progress of this track. While you’re waiting, check out the photos from the session…

Words in Session
Words gets busy while Sharpa, DJ Raiko and Rattex look on (click for larger image). Wordsworth in Session
Words writing lyrics (click for larger image).

Wordsworth in Session
Dplanet on the boards. Words on the mic (click for larger image).

Wordsworth in Session
Words writing (click for larger image).

Wordsworth / Ben Sharpa
Words and Sharpa (click for larger image).

Wordsworth in Session
Anne-Sophie shooting the video (click for larger image).

Wordsworth / Dplanet
Words and Dplanet (click for larger image).

Check out the full set of photos here.

That’s how we rrrrrrrrrroll!!

Ben Sharpa in Studio

Ben has been in Cape Town for the past week recording material for a big collaboration with UK Bass Music super producer, Milanese. So far they have completed 4 tracks – needless to say, the material is crazy! Ben also spat bars on a heavy new track by yours truly called Off the Rails. He finished off a busy week lacing a new Sibot banger that has a classic old-skool flavour even though Sibot’s trademark Glitch Hop sound is still evident.

A lot of people have been asking me when Ben’s album B. Sharpa is coming out. Don’t worry, we haven’t been sleeping. Ben is determined to make sure that he continues the tradition he established with cult crews Audio Visual and GroundWorks by pushing the boundaries of Hip Hop like only he can – so expect the unexpected! We haven’t fixed a date yet, but we guarantee it will be worth the wait.

Ben will be touring Europe with Milanese between June and August (summer time in Europe).

Anyone interested in booking Ben and Milanese in Europe should contact paul (at) k7 (dot) com.

Ben Sharpa recording 'Off the Rails'

Ben Sharpa recording 'Off the Rails'

Ben Sharpa recording 'Off the Rails'

That’s how we rrrrrrrrrroll!!

Taxi Wars Remix Recording Session

January 4, 2008 In Studio No Comments

We just finished putting down vocals for the Remix of the Cashless Society classic, Taxi Wars. The track is for a mixtape called Corner Store Vol. 1 which the one and only Nyambz is putting together.

I was originally just going to remix the track, but Nyambz wanted some new vocals so I got Kid Klever and Sinister Dexter (from The Realist), and Rattex to come through and do their thing. Hopefully we’ll get Ben Sharpa on the track too.

Corner Store Vol. 1 is going to be available from early next week and will be available for free download on the net. Stay tuned for more information.

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Rattex at work (click for larger image).

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Kid Klever rips the mic (click for larger image).

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Sinister Dexter (click for larger image).

That’s how we rrrrrrrrroll!!

Crosby in Session for ‘Go and Ask’ Remix

After a long time I finally had the honour of getting Crosby aka Digi Analog in the studio to bless up the mic.

If you don’t know Crosby you better ask somebody! This Guguletu-born reggae artist has been spending a lot of time in Europe lately, hotting up stages with the likes of Busta Rhymes, Capleton, Morgan Heritage, Black Eyed Peas & Kelis. Believe dat!

Don’t even get me started on why the South African music industry (and the media that supports it) can’t recognise its own talent, but rest assured, we’re gonna force our way into it even if we have to do it via the rest of the world first.

Anyway, back to the recording session… Gugs represent. Cros murdered the Driemanskap Go and Ask riddim. Keep it locked. It’s coming soon.

Check out Crosby on Myspace.

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Crosby in session (click for larger image).

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Crosby in session (click for larger image).

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Crosby in session (click for larger image).

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Crosby in session (click for larger image).

That’s how we rrrrrrroll!!

EPHNIKO & Terror MC in Studio

September 5, 2007 In Studio, Live No Comments

Once again, another Pioneer Unit first! This time it’s a Cuba / Cape Town connect.

After bumping into Ephniko at DJ Eazy’s show at UCT Radio, we had to get down with our second groundbreaking collabo. Having made history with My People, a collaboration between UK Grime artists Purple Simba and Shyam, and Cape Town Hip Hoppers Terror MC & Ben Sharpa, we had to continue the series by putting together Spanish-speaking Cuban rapper Ephniko and our very own Afrikaans-speaking Terror MC.

The track is called Third World Citizens. It addresses issues of racism and colonialism in both Cuba and South Africa. The beat uses samples of traditional Zimbabwean folk singing with djembas and marimbas. The effect is intentionally ambiguous as these instruments are common to both Latin America and South Africa.

I almost forgot to mention, the track is FIRE! Look at for it soon…

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Ephniko & Terror

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Ephniko flippin’ da script

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Terror MC oppie track

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Ephniko rippin’ the mic

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Ephniko, Terror & me

Check out Ephniko on myspace

That’s how we rrrrrrroll!!

Video – Into the Black (Remix) – Ben Sharpa

September 3, 2007 In Studio, Video No Comments

What’s up people! Hope you all had a nice weekend!

We were busy as always. KONFAB came to the studio and started recording his new album joint, Solar Eclipse. It’s been a while since we recorded so it’s nice to get back to being creative after spending so much time on ‘business’, marketing and admin. Solar Eclipse features a beat by none other than DJ Raiko. It’s definitely gonna be another KONFAB classic.

My man Ben Sharpa also came over and we shot a quick Youtube video for Into the Black (Remix). Nothing fancy, we just got out on the roof of my apartment block with my Canon Ixus 65 and shot one take. Straight into iMovie, synced up the sound and BAM! 15 mins work. High production values and well-crafted videos are great, but not enough people just make quick low-budget videos for Youtube. Sometimes fans just want to see the artist and hear the song – think of it as an mp3 with some added visuals.

Anyway, check it out…

That’s how we rrrrrrroll!!

Bad Man Party!

April 16, 2007 In Studio No Comments

Oracle Flo 4

This weekend we started recording ‘Bad Man Party’, the 20th and final track to go on the Planetary Assault Mixtape. It’s another dark club banger featuring Oracle Flo, Rattex, KONFAB and Ben Sharpa.

O-Flo laid his vocals down on Sunday. The rest of the boys will be coming through this week to lace their verses. MORE FIRE!

Oracle Flo finally sorted himself out a myspace page. Go and friend him up…

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