A Brief History of Immaculate Taste
As long as I can remember, I have always been into music. I have vivid memories of digging into my dad’s Congolese vinyl and my older brother’s hip hop CD collections. The Congolese legend Papa Wemba was the first artist who really marked me. A lot of my African pride was informed by his songs. Music, to me, is evocative in a way that few things are. The desire to make, produce, and A&R records happened over time as a natural expression of who I am. I started by making CD mixes for friends, then selling CDs to friends lol, then being the designated aux cable operator. I’m fascinated by setting the mood of the room via music. To be frank, I dreamt of being an “atalaku” (atalaku serve as the animateur in Congolese popular music), but the power that be cursed me with a shit voice so I started rapping.
As an African, well, as a child of middle-class African parents, pursuing music as a career just ain’t an option. I find it fascinating how much our parents love music so long as it’s made by other people’s offspring. Their own are predestined to be doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc.
So, how did I get here? The year was 2009 when a routine traffic stop turned into any undocumented immigrant’s worst fear. I ended up spending nine months in a detention center while awaiting my fate. It was during those nine months that I told myself, once I get out, I’ll go after everything I always wanted to do, but for some reason or another I never did. You know, YOLO and whatnot!
Sure enough, a few years later, Immaculate Taste label was born. We are more of an experiment than a traditional label. We are open to any genre (What’s genre in the post iPod shuffle world anyway?) so long as we believe in it and find it dope, regardless of if it’s pop, indie pop, electronic, hip hop, alt R&B, afro house, or anything else. This has led to our work with some amazing Nigerian artists like Cruel Santino, AYLØ, and Gold (Tay Iwar and producer Le Mav’s duo).
Almost a decade later, I’m in awe of what that decision has led to. I have had the opportunity to manage some incredible artists, and A&R some great records. I got to travel the world to DJ some of my favorite festivals. I can’t wait to see what the next 10 years hold. ITOE!