South Africa: The Magnetic Beat of Amapiano

analysis

Amapiano music forms part of a selection of hypnotic South African sounds that captivate fans in incomparable ways.

The South African music scene comprises unique strands of electronic genres that are not only able to capture local cultural identities but lend themselves to creating and contributing to unexpected pop culture shifts that sometimes even make a global impact.

Stemming from the unmistakable sound of bacardi house music, which is derived from Shangaan electro music, subgenres like gqom, isigubhu, sijokojoko and amapiano carry the essence of township groove culture and create contexts with a strong resonance through clever sampling of kwaito, disco, house and a myriad retro pop culture references. Despite the number of other influences that may be presented at a given time, the beats essentially trigger a visceral reaction to the call of low drum basslines that have varying degrees of riffs and distortions. These are usually created on the audio editing suite known as fruity loops studio; it supports pitch shifting, beat slicing, time stretching and chopping - its latest version allows producers to record up to 64 audio tracks at the same time.

More specifically, amapiano is characterised by synth leads, wide basslines, airy pads and lush...

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