A magazine for Africans and friends of Africa...Our Voices, Our Vision, Our Culture

The AFRican Profile: Music Artist Brendon Moeller
By Cynthia Nakpodia-Ribeiro

Hailing from Johannesburg, South Africa, Brendon Moeller, of Beat Pharmacy, was more than willing to have a chat with The AFRican. Their psychedelic style is something not short of unique, mixed with Dub and Electronica. A Queens New York local, Moeller credits his inspiration to artists who think outside of the box, and aren't pressured by money and fame. The conclusion of his down-to-earth personality is quickly reached as he sits down with our own Cynthia Nakpodia-Ribeiro.

AFRican: Did music play a role in your childhood?
Brendon: Yes, from an early age music became a best friend. I spent hourslistening and taping music off the radio. My parents picked up on my musicality and sent me for piano lessons at age 10. After 2 years I begged to quit due to boredom. The music that struck a chord with me was not the music my piano teacher was teaching me, so I quickly lost interest.

AFRican: What influences your style today?
Brendon: I listen to all kinds of music; techno, dub reggae, jazz, rock, soul, hip hop and more. I like music that's honest and innovative. A few of my idols are King Tubby, The Orb, Rhythm & Sound, My Bloody Valentine, Jimi Hendrix, Fela Kuti, A Tribe Called Quest to name but a few.

AFRican: Who are your heroes' in this industry? And what inspired youto enter the music industry?
Brendon: My heroes in this industry are the one's who push the envelope and are in pursuit of artistic endeavor rather than fame and money. One of my biggest inspirations to enter this biz was The Orb.

AFRican: How would you describe your style of music?
Brendon: psychedelic dub-techno w/ a hint of jazz and afro beat! :)

AFRican: What project are you working on now?
Brendon: I have just finished an album for www.third-ear.net and am now working on an album of protest dub songs.

AFRican: Tell us about the song, band or moment that sparked yourinterest in music?
Brendon: I guess it was The Orb's "little fluffy clouds" and the Stereo MC's "connected" that really struck a chord with me.

AFRican: When did you start producing?
Brendon: 1994

AFRican: What made you decide to specialize in the kind of music youproduce?
Brendon: I could do it on my own in my bedroom.

AFRican: As a music professional what's your thoughts on the state ofmusic currently?
Brendon: There's a lot of good music out there, but also a ton of mediocre formulaic nonsense. While technology has really emancipated musicians from many of the old analog restrictions, it has also bred many lazy and unimaginative sheep.

AFRican: In your opinion, what are some of the challenges that face African artists?
Brendon: The same challenges that all artists have to face, emerging.

AFRican: Tell us about any recent collaboration?
Brendon: I collaborate with www.drumsforyou.com quite a bit...a truly visionary company.

AFRican: Tell us about your production company?
Brendon: It helps facilitate all my music endeavors' and collaborations.

AFRican: What advice would you give to a young African coming up in the industry?
Brendon: Be prepared to make sure that you have something unique to offer. It takes time and determination. I'm still struggling.

AFRican: Tell us about a career highpoint you never get tired ofsharing?
Brendon: Performing live with Paul St. Hillarie and Shigeru Tanabu in London. Our rehearsal consisted of emailing mp3's to each other, but that night something magic happened and the synergy led to the most amazing improvising on stage. A real dubbed out psychedelic jam!

Come and visit me at www.beatpharmacy.net or www.myspace.com/beatpharmacy