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‘One Summer…’ New Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal launched live on Radio out of Corsica, Cyprus and London

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dl coverRadio brings people together, it always and always will. Haji Mike in Cyprus linked up with Gibsy Rhodes aka Kingdom Signal in the summer of 2014 via Versionist Radio. Gibsy wanted to do a Haji Mike Special so he requested a few tunes. This led to an invite to Haji Mike to join the station, which happened shortly afterwards. Versionist was also known as the ‘Village Radio’ and would later transmute into ‘OuttaMiYard Radio’ where people from different locations around the world switch studios every couple of hours like as one Reggae/Dub Radio Marathon. Radio also brings people together through music and is a vital media for musicians as a platform to showcase their creations. Haji Mike realized this when he started releasing independent music in 1990 via London. ‘The first time I did a radio session for Andy Kershaw I was over the moon. In fact Kershaw was the first person to play ‘Stavroulla’ one of my early releases in Cyprus’ says Haji Mike ‘ and that concept of the live session, where musicians jam on air was crucial for many artists like myself back in the day as a way of getting exposure.’ Fast forward, 27 years and the live radio session is just as important but something fundamental has changed in the meantime. The Internet gives everyone the opportunity to play live on air from any place and any time as long as the technology works. So Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal, follow in the that fine live radio session tradition this month with a couple of special exclusive shows to launch their new release ‘One Summer’ (Power of Love Records) which came out on May 1st. Dates as follows for the sessions and interviews:

LIVE SESSION HM, KS CORSICA OMY RADIO

Weds 10th May 17:00–21:00 UTC+02 (4-8pm, UK – 6-10pm, CY) OuttaMiYardRadio Live Session Episode 1 – Live and direct from Kingdom Signal Studios, Corsica Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal play ‘One Summer…’ in full plus dubplates, selections and tunes galore as the two Kings of The Mediterranean Underground meet for the first time on Air.

Tune in here——> outta-mi-yard-hm-main

Thurs 11th May Live interview with Jahmon Selector (Belgium) on OuttaMiYardRadio 18:00 – 18.30  Tune in here——>    outta-mi-yard-hm-main

Thurs 11th May Live interview with DJ Debbie Golt on The Outerglobe (UK) on Resonance FM 7.40-8.15 pm  Tune in here——>  resonancefm_logo

LIVE SESSION HM, KS CORSICA GBR RADIO

Fri  12th May 5-7pm UK (7-9pm CY) GreekBeat Radio (UK)  Live Session Episode 2 live and direct from Kingdom Signal Studios, Corsica Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal perform ‘One Summer…’ in full plus dubplates and selections. Tune in here ——————>greekbeat

What people have been saying about ‘One Summer…’   

‘Lush New Dub Sound’ – Sarah Fenwick – Cyprus News Report

‘Meditative’ Sista Skanka – OMYRadio

‘Hypnotic’ Dub Thomas – Dubophonic/OMYRadio/RastFM

‘Fabulous!’ Dj Mario Greekbeat Radio

‘A contemplative call to action, earthed in the cosmos, rootical, soaring, essential!’ Debbie Golt Outerglobe/Resonance 104.4FM

‘Many things…an awakening, fresh, exciting, earthy, witty, poetic, summerness, takes you on journeys, bittersweet and ambitious’ Stelios Keryniotis, Astra Radio Cyprus

 

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The New release ‘One Summer…’ is available through  Google ,24/7 ,7 Digital, Amazon MP3, BounDEE, Emusic, iFeel Music, iMusica, iTunes,Juno, MediaNet Mobile Partners: AMI Entertainment & Gracenote – Streaming – Napster/Rhapsody/YouTube Art Tracks and many more….

 

 

 

Also check the video for ‘Stargazing’ by Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal

stargazing

Web Links:

Power of Love Records on Facebook

Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal Bandcamp

Kingdom Signal Soundcloud 

Haji Mike

For more information contact  POLRecords@protonmail.com

 The ‘Haji Mike & Kingdom Signal Live Corsica Sessions’ are supported by

politistikes logo final 0317 - EN - brown  pol logo  outta-mi-yard-hm-main  greekbeat

Far From The Maddening Crowd…

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I can recall the phrase from school. It was the title of a book we had to read by one Thomas Hardy.’Far From The Madding Crowd’ . Its been my philosophy for a while to many things. And with a bit of poetic license I’d adapt the phrase to “Maddening” because the polarisation, lies, and distortions we are living under in Cyprus right now are precisely that….

When I see some people baying for some one’s blood, unless of course its a mass murderer and the evidence is clear, I tend to go in the opposite direction. Its easy enough for many people to be swept up by the current wave of anti-Presidential euphoria. ‘The Dissatisfied’ who gather most nights (APOEL football games usually being the exception) outside the presidential palace may be demanding Christofias head on a plate, but then many of these people, at least the most hard nosed ones, the most dissatisfied ones, have been doing the same ever since he got elected, and they strike me as mad as a box of frogs on acid pills!

I also heard from an ordinary citizen today, whatever that means, that Christofias advizer gets paid 200,000 Euros a month. The woman who said this also told me she heard it on the radio, so it must be true. Perhaps some one got a couple of digits wrong, but then again we are talking about a mass media who are often guilty of exaggeration for the sake of stirring up trouble. What did they say last autumn, a muslim man ‘allgedly’ – we never heard or saw him say it – but he ‘allegedly said ‘ The bells should be banned from ringing in St Lazarus Church’ in Larnaca. This statement was tauntamount to Orthodox Christians of the utmost blasphemy. No one knew who this person was but the fact the media said it, made it into what we academics call a ‘factoid’ an unwanted myth, or in every day terms, an out and out lie.

So when I heard the maddening crowd chanting ‘Christofias, Murderer, Resign’ and ‘We Will Hang You’ it made my blood run cold because 1. We are not living in the ‘wild wild west’ where the possees implemented their own justice by hanging people on trees and 2. Every one is innocent until they have been proven guilty with substantiated evidence.

Of course what I have just said may make many people’s blood curl, but you tell me why should we be so vindictive, testosteronified like a bunch of football hooligans out to mash up the ‘opposing tribe’ when the facts have not been found as yet as to why the explosion happened on 11/7/11? Its easy enough to point the fingers at the executive power in this society and demand his head on a plate, but what about all the people involved in the chain of command?The explosion could have happened deliberately, by accident or it could also be that all the things that coul go wrong went wrong. I do however find it hard to believe, despite what the media are telling me to think, and what various haters are saying, that Dimtris Christofias, of Dikomo, the President of Cyprus knew this was going to happen, and did nothing to stop it from happening.

And last but by no means least. Since when did an investigation about a tragedy such as this start so immediately? You remember the S300 missiles that never came – was there ever an investigation – NOPE! Remember the Head of the National Guard, the late Evangelos Florakis and the tragic way he died – no investigation!! How about the pilot who went joy riding in the skies over a built up area in Kolossi and met a sad death when his plane crashed into two citizens houses – no investigation!!! And the 8 people who killed themselves when the stock market bubble burst, and all the thousands who lost huge amounts of money – no investigation. And the Helios Flight 522, and the 121 souls who died so tragically – No Prosecution – and still 6 painful years on No Justice!!! And no one was on the streets in any of these cases demanding the head of the president on a plate!

No one is guilty until they have been found guilty, with substantiated evidence and as far as I am concerned every politician in parliament who sat back when all the aforementioned tragedies happened should check their conscience and be honest enough to admit and do something about all the truths that have been hidden amongst all the bitterest lies we have been spoonfed for so long. May be I am askiing for too much, after all we are talking about the place where a crazy minority of 3 percenters organized a coup which led to an invasion by Turkey in 1974, and all the catastrophic consequences that followed, and nobody, to this very day has ever said sorry, not 1 single apology! And nobody to this day, has ever been tried or put on trial. It took governments 37 whole years to conduct an investigation on the ‘Cyprus File’ – ‘O Fakelos Ths Kybrou’, oh and that happened under the Presidency of Dimitris Christofias!!!

London People – its been a long time…

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It has been a long time since I played a gig in London. Over 15 years in fact. Since then I moved to Cyprus, finished a PhD, married Marina, the love of my life, and from that bond we have two lovely kids. Finishing the PhD also led me into teaching, which in more ways than one, fulfills me 100%. Music during all this time has never been on the back burner. It remains a serious passion for me. I’ve made a few albums, toured various parts of the world, attended conferences, shared music with people all over and stay engaged with music, despite how it’s changed.

When I started out making music as a solo act in 1990 people made these things called 12″ vinyls. Then CD’s took over and then Mp3’s which have redefined how people share music. As a result of all these changes I guess it would have been wise and easy to say, well thats it, I have done what I have done. But there is more to music for me than just releasing songs for people to buy or download for free.

The main thing that keeps me motivated is the live situation. No matter what happens to how we buy or get the music for free, there will always be the need, the fulfillment in audiences to see, hear and feel music as a live performance. And musicians themselves, will always get that equal buzz factor, doing it in front of audiences, and making a communicative connection – no matter the content, style or sounds. Some people will do it for fame, some for love, and some for peace, but at the end of the day, many of these people will feel that need to carry on and perform.

So while many people, not just in London, may feel Haji Mike hasn’t done nothing since ‘Vraggaman’ I would like to say that I have done many things, in many countries around the world. Why people are still so fascinated by one song is a bit baffling to me. I never expected ‘Vraggaman’ to be what it became, as I have never thought about ‘the lets write a hit formula’.

More than anything, ‘Vraggaman’ and ‘Stavroulla’ before it were done for the fun of it and for the simple right to be able to make something different – something very London, very Cypriot and yet still had a reggae vibe to it, that Jamaican link.
The tunes were done with my late producer friend and mentor, Zacharias ‘Sugar’ Hajishacalli, who sadly passed away in 2007 and while many people equate me with these tunes, I am just half of the reason, Sugar played just as much a role as me in their making. And believe me we did have a lot of fun in the studio making them. But that was only the beginning, which took me from London to Cyprus and back 12 times alone in 1992-93 to do gigs.

As an artist in London I always felt most of the community media, such as LGR and Parikiaki, never really understood me. And since I left I guess they have never bothered to find out if I am still alive or dead. I know that sounds very cynical but it is how I feel. One reason why I left London in fact was that narrow-mindedness which stifles and suffocates creativity and expression. It was surprisingly enough easier for me to be played and respected in Cyprus. For example when I moved over here, Radio Proto offered me two radio shows, I also had a regular column in The Cyprus Mail newspaper, plus was one of a first generation of TV show presenters on SIGMA TV. In doing all these media it became very clear to me that I was far more welcome in Cyprus than London media wise.
And despite all of these achievements in Cyprus, not once have these outlets ever mentioned any of this, let alone approached me for any kind of interview.

Eventually, as much as I liked working in the Cyprus media on a freelance basis I dropped out of TV to focus on my teaching and music. I also much prefer radio and writing blogs these days, and doing music which is dub poetry based with my producer friend Dub Caravan

There have been some very notable exceptions to these community based media exclusionary rules in Britain. Trehantiri Music in Green Lanes Haringey was the first place that ever played my songs to an unsuspecting public, and I will always raise an ‘E-Iva’ glass of wine to The Pattalis Family. Radio wise Mediterranean Mix on Inspiration FM probably has more of my releases than I do. And John Kaponi once hailed that Haji Mike was about to conquer the USA. It was a great headline but that was never my intention 🙂

There are also many people in the mainstream British Media who have always been supportive, from the legendary and late John Peel Andy Kershaw and FRoots Magazine to more contemporary radio presenters such as DeeJay Ritu and Dotun Adebayo

I also had the pleasure and honour to work with many people in the world from far and wide. For example:
Lia Vissi , plus Sonic Crime and my good friend’s Mike Minas and Mike Cherry; Standout Selector, my brother from another mother in San Francisco, the classic Greek Rappers Imiskoubria and reggae pioneer Ranking Johnny from THC Records in Greece who recently released my first 7″ vinyl single; my long time production bredren, Tony Muttley Matthew in Londinium; and how could I not mention Don V Louie, Sugar’s brother, who taught me so much about myself vocally; last but by no means least my poet brother from across the barbed wire in Cyprus, Zeki Ali

And I know I have left many people out due to my memory failing me, no offence, its all there on my web page

So I am very much looking forward to playing in London on 31st October and there will be more gigs soon as well. I will also be in Liverpool on December 2nd at Parr Street Studios. And my home town of Nicosia, on 13th November with The Roots Crew Sound System

As you can see from all this, it’s a busy life, at times hectic but I enjoy every moment to the fullest. So for all the people who have supported the works over the decades, I give thanks and praises. For all those who do not, its nothing personal from me, I just wanted to set the record straight. You can continue as ever, misrepresenting Cypriots in the ways you feel best. I will just keep on movin, as the song once said from Soul II Soul…And before I sign off, one very final mention and thanks goes out to Andrew Hubbard Badger for organising The One Cyprus Concert in London on 31st October. It is a real honour to perform along side Neşe Yaşın
People like Andrew keep hope alive in Cyprus, even in these most difficult and pessimistic of times. And if you can;t make the gig, it will be up there as an online stream, live and direct as it happens. Check out ONECYPRUS.

One Love

Haji Mike

Who Is The Informer?

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talat christofias PEACE 247 

There is possibly no place like it in the world – Cyprus that is. We have the finest Zivania, Verigon grapes, great beaches, ski-ing in the mountains, the juiciest figs, and so much more but when it comes to keeping secrets, there is a serious lack of the grey matter. Why is it that certain sections of the media simply want to pick the recipe, bake the cake and eat it and then declare quiet dumbly that all they were doing was informing the public.

What am I talking about? Well you see Greek Cypriots have the body called The National Council. It is quiet anachronistic, harking back to the days when we had Makarios, our first president as Ethnarch. Makarios, despite his nationalist leanings was simply a liberal in a political sense. Some one who believed, given the realities of Cyprus after 1974, that there was room for all democratically minded parties on the National Council to struggle together for a solution. When he passed away in 1977 The National Council(NC) became more like a battle ground, just like the parliamentary body in The Republic of Cyprus, The House of Representatives.

Since that time, documents which have been defined as ‘secret’ or ‘classified’ have often been leaked, usually by the press and more recently TV and radio media. So this week we saw another classic example of gross media distortion when two TV channels, first SiGMA and then ANT1 (alternatively known as Limbouros One) screened a secret document in the evening which had been shared by the NC in the morning. President Christofias was right to be livid on the issue, particularly see that Limbouros One TV channel grossly misinterpreted the document by stigmatizing the President as some one caving into demands placed by his Turkish Cypriot counterpart, Mehmet Ali Talat. This effort comes at a crucial time when the talks entered their second phase, enduring a bump in confidence last week with the fiasco at Limnitis.

Limbouros is not known for its love of Christofias for historical reasons. Owned by Loukis Papaphilippou, who once tried to represent the failed coup military regime of July 14th 1974 at the UN, the station and its owner have maintained a consistently anti-left, hard line nationalist, rejectionist position. In fact, Christofias the candidate and President have never been invited to ANT1. Instead the station churns out a daily diatribe against efforts at a solution. This biasness can also be linked to various fringe far right forces who have attempted to discredit the President with baseless accusations that he is a ‘traitor’ and an ‘informer’. It has never been explained by this rabble rousing Greek flag waving bunch of aspiring goose steppers quiet how Christofias has betrayed Cyprus or who he is informing to but Hitler never really explained himself either. The slogans simply appeared on walls near APOEL’s building and were speedily painted over. They were also bleated out at a rather baseless rally on July 20th aimed to remember the Referendum and the ‘Great No’ of 2004. Several Presidents have endured these kinds of slanderous accusations as well. Vassiliou, Clerides and now Christofias. All of them, despite huge ideological differences, methodologies and personalities attempted, in a constructive manner to solve the unsolvable, to resolve the Cyprus Problem.

Taking all of this into account, its disturbing how nothing has ever been done by people in government, no matter who they are, about the role the media plays in leaking secret documents. In no other country in the world, at least to this scribe’s knowledge would a closed door meeting between political leaders occur in the AM and its content, including classified documents be leaked by TV stations by the PM!!!

It is also shameful that the TV stations engaging in such activities are completely and deliberately misinforming the public and playing on people’s deep sensitivities. Personally I am tired of being told what to think and how to think by the media. Who is the informer and who is providing the misinformation and why they are providing it would make an interesting TV discussion, I wonder if any Greek Cypriot TV channel would dare host it!