Pulo NDJ's debut album: 'Desert to Douala' (Wonderwheel Rec)
Pulo NDJ is an encounter between talented artists from Chad & Cameroon, globe-trotting Nickodemus and HAPE Collective's own DJ Buosis.
THE PROJECT: Pulo NDJ
Chad is in many ways a blind spot on the map of today's global musical conversation. Overlooked, misunderstood and misrepresented, outside observers rarely concede the country an autonomous voice over its past, present and future.
Tackling this view is precisely one of the aims of Pulo NDJ, result of the encounter between HAPE Collective and a group of talented artists from Cameroon, Chad, Congo and Togo. One year and an half later, we are almost ready to produce our first album. And we need your help to make it happen!
It happened to be in N’Djamena, the dusty capital of Chad with its well-kept stories of boundary-breaking musical collaborations and thirst for experimentation. A city that reflects the country's diversity: the arid North, bordering the Sahara, where nomadic tribes revere the endless desert with their handcrafted instruments. The lush tropical South, where the frenetic drumming of local initiation ceremonies blends with sounds of neighboring Congo and Cameroon. Right in the middle: N'Djamena, a forgotten melting pot of cultures and peoples bursting with unrecorded stories of life at the margins of the world's attention.
The project found its inspiration in the city's un-narrated diversity and seeks to explore the possibilities offered by technology to demonstrate how the country’s rich heritage connects with existing musical conversations. It strives to create bridges in a world of walls. It has been a yearlong creative process that built friendships and fostered understanding among people united by a passion for music and creation.
In May 2018, Nickodemus accepted an invitation to travel to N'Djamena. Of a weeklong series of encounters and conversations about music and culture was born the idea of this album featuring 10 songs, originally written and recorded in N’Djamena.
Pulo NDJ's first album contains hopeful and life-affirming songs documenting the human experience in this overlooked corner of the world:
Dabadji Am Alcorama and Cera Cera, are two songs built around the sound of the garaya, a traditional string instrument used by the shepherds of the region on their crossings of the desert.
Mbaoundaye and Bazaka are reminiscent of Southern Chad’s traditional ceremonies with their hypnotic balafon and tam-tam patterns and ancestral chants.
Sanga finds its origins in rhythms used in Cameroonian wedding parties and blending it with Soukuss and Congolese rumba.
Taroum brings a West African afrobeat flavor to the game.
Kewolea takes its inspiration from Togo, a marvelous song about man’s respect for its own work.
And finally the two hits on the album: Un Jour, an uplifting rap-song based on a garaya loop Clandoman, a song of praise to the ubiquitous moto-taxi drivers, the real kings of the roads of the Sahel.
The production of the Pulo NDJ album is a collaborative effort between HAPE collective and Wonderwheel Recordings and requires a total investment of around 9000€. HAPE collective will contribute 2000€ to the recording and mastering of the album. Our aim: collecting 2800€ and more which Wonderheel Recordings will match.
By backing this project you will get the free download of the album and other awesome rewards, including field recording from remote locations in Chad, a fanzine telling you the story of HAPE Collective and Pulo NDJ, a 7" inch vinyl record of our favorite two songs from the album and much more. Check them out!