Waajeed Announces Fundraising Efforts For Detroit-Based Underground Music Academy

Detroit-based electronic artist Waajeed has announced a new fundraising initiative to raise money for the new Underground Music Academy, of which Waajeed will be the director.

The UMA is a new initiative intending to create a support network for electronic music artists coming out of Detroit. The aim of fundraising is to help pay for hiring a digital team to capture, edit and distribute the Academy’s video tutorials in early 2021.

The fundraising campaign began in early October when Waajeed released the first part one of his new two-part ‘Acts Of Love’ EP series. Limited to a vinyl run of 200 copies, all proceeds are being donated directly to the UMA. The second EP in the series will be available on December 9.

To further support fundraising efforts, Waajeed will host a live raffle in December of donated items. The main raffle item will be a framed photograph of an unseen J Dilla photograph, taken from his ‘A Day In The LIfe of John Doe’ exhibition. The raffle will be streamed from Waajeed’s Instagram.

The eventual aim for the UMA is to have a bricks and mortar site open by 2022 to host workshops on business and production, internships, job placements and DJ gigs.

The donation link for the Underground Music Academy is here.

First Thoughts: Waajeed – Ten Toes Down EP

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Detroit legendary music producer, Waajeed, has returned this summer with his Ten Toes Down EP, having finished last year with his heavy 10-track album, ‘From the Dirt’ through his very own label, Dirt Teck Reck. With a career spanning over 20 years, Waajeed’s production knowledge and ability has seen him take on a range of styles. From his early work with J Dilla in 2002, where the pair released a number of Hip-Hop sampled based projects through their Bling47 record label, to the stage he is at now, releasing more soulful house and techno tracks.

Working closely with American Soulstress, Blue Raspberry under her alias Candi Lindsay for two of the three tracks in the EP, Waajeed seamlessly blends her strong powerful vocals throughout his house stylised production. The first track ‘Heavy‘, has Candi Lindsay vocals at the forefront before the opening drop, as she scatters and inflates her vocals to create a momentous drop in the first couple minutes into the track. The smooth layering of synth sounds develop nicely over Candi Lindsay vocals coming back and forth in the pockets.

‘Deeper into Blue’ has a soothing beautiful progression feel throughout the track from the Candi Lindsay spoken word at the beginning to the development of the backing chords, bassline which gradually elevates the track. Waajeed’s closing track, ‘Too Black’ has this soothing dark undertone from layered drums over the kicks which you can imagine would move any dancefloor.

You can buy the the EP via bandcamp below:

First Thoughts: Waajeed – From The Dirt

Little late to find this one, but most definitely glad I found it! Detroit born and bred legendary producer; Waajeed blessed us with a deeply soulful house 10-track album titled; ‘From the Dirt’. With over 20 years in the game, Waajeed started producing hip hop style beats, using a sampler machine which belonged to well-respected producer; J Dilla. What’s also worth noting is his shift to house and dance floor focused music in recent years, which is testament to his dynamic producing ability. Released through his own label; Dirt Tech Reck, this album follows on from a string of short EP releases starting from 2017.

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There’s an amazing energy throughout the album, accompanied with some beautiful vocal features, consistent brilliant arrangement and a range of colourful percussion washing every track. Stand out track ‘From the Dirt’ opens the journey momentously, as Waajeed creates a captivating soundscape with slow building kicks and an attacking piano rift. The Impactful preachers’ sample in the track ‘I Just Wanna Tell’ decorates a wonderful spiritual house feel throughout, similar to tracks like never grow Old’ from Robert Hood. He’s clever chopping of the preachers’ sample against the growing presence of drums and claps quickly shifts your mood from contemplation to absolute joy, as the drum and kicks begin to take center stage in the track. Waajeed’s mellow, hypnotic sounds in tracks like ‘Strength’ and ‘I ain’t Safe’, blends well with soul singer; Ideeyah accompaniment throughout those tracks.

Have a listen and support via bandcamp below: