Contributors

Black da Massacre entered music through dance and, later, by learning keyboard. In 2014, he started his career as a digital music producer in Lira and has since worked at several studios in northern Uganda, including Onyach Records, TJ Records, La Myel Productions, Glory of God Studio. He shifted to Gulu in 2015 and, in 2017,  opened his own production studio, First Klass Recordz (a dream come true!). He has worked with more than 500 artists in his 6-year career. His biggest hits include “Akuri Kwee” by Lenox and Wesely, “Kunu” by Laxy and Blamo, and “Party People” by Pato Loverboy. His latest passion is deejaying original, high-tempo Afro-Nilotic percussive music, which he calls Ngwarah. Black likes to talk economics in his free time. To stay informed about Black’s current work, follow his social media account.

Award-winning producer and CEO at Complex Studio in Gulu, Doctor Kaunda was an early leader on the northern Ugandan music production scene. He began his career in 2000, opening his own studio (Complex) in 2006. Over the last nineteen years, his hits include “Lapwony” by Judas Rapknowledge, “Best Friend” by Lil Roy, “Madara” by Mambo Onestar, and “Latin Kic” by Bosmic Otim and Lil Roy. With a background playing trombone for brass band and a degree in IT, digital music production combines his passions. Kaunda enjoys bringing up young talent and likes the way challenges sharpen and shape you. He has been awarded best producer by the Acholi Music Awards (Kampala) and JAMZ Awards. To learn more about Kaunda and his current work, visit his social media page.

Producer Mellix entered digital music production after first developing his talent as a multi-instrumentalist through church and school. Growing up in Kampala, his award-winning productions have established him on the northern Ugandan music scene. Mellix is proud to have worked at multiple studios including TJ Records, Big Sound, Marks Records, and, currently, Hard Block Records. His top hits include “Aromo” by Sherry Princess, “Susana” by Paplo, “Mer me Icwinya” by Eleman, “Megwu Ber” and “Goyo Toki” by Bosmic Otim. Mellix has been recognized for his talent with both the Jamz Award and TUMA Award. Follow Mellix’s current work via his social media page.

Music has been a part of Producer Usaih’s life from an early age— from his great admiration for the music of Michael Jackson and Bob Marley, to learning multiple music instruments, to playing in brass band with Kaunda. Professionally, Usaih entered digital music production full time in 2011, first at Rick’s Production and then VIO Records before joining Complex Records. Usaih prides himself on self-improvement, seeking to better himself with each new production, and has a special talent for producing lakubukubu beats. In his 9-year career, he has produced many hits, most recently the massive “Yoo Leng PiLi LiLi” and “Wan Acel” with artist Odong Romeo. 

Joella Bitter is an ethnographer and artist who specializes in the anthropology of sound, aesthetics, and urban life. Growing up in rural Texas without a television, music and radio listening formed her primary engagement with popular culture. She became more interested in sound and storytelling while spending time in Gulu (starting in 2009) and learning about Acoli “oral” culture. Joella received a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from Duke University, where she completed her dissertation, “Sounding the City: Aural Intimacies and Ecologies of Knowledge in Gulu, Uganda.” Prior to Duke, Joella received an M.A. from The New School for Social Research, where she developed her interests in the entwining of narrative, sensory, and material sedimentations of power.