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The Sound Of A Nation: Nairobi Rhythms

We recently sat down with the incredible musician, producer, songwriter and all round great guy, Sean Peevers! Having just dropped his debut sample collection Nairobi Rhythms, we asked Sean a few key questions about his life, music, and creating a truly unique sample pack! Enjoy! 

Tell us a little about yourself! Projects, styles and history etc.

My name is Sean Peevers, born and bred Kenyan. I’ve been in the music industry for over 15 years now, humbled by the forever changing sounds of Africa. I have worked on projects like Coke Studio Africa, Thomas The Tank Engine, Kati Kati (Oscar Nominated) and many many more, as well as artists like Burna Boy, Sauti Sol, Trey Songz, Patoranking, Ayra Starr. Although as a producer, I work with a fusion of ethnic sounds, I like to keep my style open, and use feelings instead of genres to describe my work.

The pack sounds incredible and features some amazing musicians. Can you tell us about those guys & how you know each other?

Thank you! I am very fortunate to have a relationship with some of Africa’s finest musicians. Since I have built up a name for myself in the music industry, I find these great musicians along my journey.

Makadem has a great reputation as being one of the best Nyatiti players in the world, and I have heard him many many times live. This is actually our first project together. Tugi, who is the guitarist, is a good friend of mine, while Benjamin’s name is always being mentioned, a legend amongst African guitars.

What’s your recording process like both ‘in the box’ and when integrating hardware? 

I use a Neve Genesys 32 channel analogue desk for my mixing, recording and mastering. Most of the audio was recorded with a Neumann U87, using the Neve pre-amps. I use Nuendo 10.3 to craft all the sounds together, while enhancing them with UAD Plugins.

The pack features some amazing instruments. Can you tell us a little about those?

Yes certainly, the Nyatiti is a traditional instrument, from the Luo tribe. Made of 8 strings, normally from different sizes of fishing line. They use a mixture of beeswax, animal hide and various other materials to make its shape and sound.

The Orutu, again from the Luo tribe, is a one string instrument that uses reptile hide, a metal string and a bow made of sisal string. The percussion instruments I either played myself, or sampled from traditional drums from Western Kenya. The guitar is pretty self explanatory in terms of its origin, however the style of playing ranges from benga, rumba and soukous guitar.

Are there any African / East African artists that we should know about?

 I would say that the originators of Kenyan music are to thank. The oldies like Daudi Kabaka, Ayub Ogada, Les Wanyika and the likes.


The rhythms that are present are amazing! Is this something that you grew up with or had to learn?

Thank you. Since my heart was grown in Kenya, it has become accustomed itself to the rhythms and sounds of the country. I find the rhythm’s of this country to be very spiritual.

Thanks Sean. If you haven’t already you can check the full pack HERE!

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