by Eric FitzGerald
THE third edition of the Dolan’s Summer Party happens on Saturday August 23. This year’s party features God Knows and mynameisjOhn, R.S.A.G, Moscow Metro, Elaine Mai, The Vincents, New Secret Weapon, Jet Setter, Slow Riot, Elastic Sleep and choosing the platters that matter, Lenny DJ Set, Steve Windings DJ Set and Tom Fitz (Termight Klub) DJ Set.
There are more names to be added to the bill, but it is an awesome lineup already and access all areas is just a fiver. Dolan’s Summer Party will take place over four venues: The Warehouse, Dolan’s Upstairs, The Terrace and Kasbah Social Club.
Limerick Post spoke to God Knows this week. The Shannon based MC and DJ/ producer mynameisjOhn launched their debut album this summer. The debut album ‘Rusangano / Family’ more than delivers on the immense promise shown on previous collaborations on ‘The Struggle EP’ and ‘The Focusing Effect EP’. ‘Rusangano / Family’ fuses soul, grime, hip hop and Afrobeat with MC God Knows flows about being a black man growing up in Shannon. It is an astoundingly good record. We here at Limerick Post consider it a serious contender for a Choice Music Prize nomination in 2015.
When God Knows and mynameisjOhn launched the LP with a gig in Limerick in July, their show was a high energy communal experience played to full house. Days before that launch gig they had rocked the main stage of the Body & Soul Festival and supported Snoop Dogg at his Dublin shows. The profile of God Knows and his work with mynameisjOhn has risen fast in these last few months.
God Knows remarks, “The support from people has been extremely amazing. It has been an amazing experience. The homecoming gig we did earlier in July really showed what Limerick is about. It was very compelling to see everybody come and support.”
In this City of Culture year, has Limerick turned a corner in how it is portrayed outside of the city?
“For the Limerick City of Culture thing, it is really about the people. It is about the people of Limerick realising that they are fantastic people. Sometimes we want to put too much value in money and the hoopla, I think you could go to the best restaurant in the world but if the service is terrible, you still think that the restaurant is crap.
“It’s about the people of Limerick realising that they are fantastic people. So when people realise how great Limerick city is, they realise that the city is really, really awesome.”
God Knows arrived in Shannon from Zimbabwe as a kid when his father began work as an airplane engineer. He would hang around the basketball court with his friends swapping mix tapes.
He remembers, “I was very passionate about the music. I would bring everybody over to my house and record by whatever means possible. We were bedroom producers trying to figure things out as best we could.”
These early efforts developed into the Shannon based hip hop collective RAOK (Random Acts of Kindness). God Knows and fellow RAOK member MuRli along with producer mynameisjOhn is the live act that is touring ‘Rusangano / Family’ today. And there is more to come as rapper MuRli is now recording with mynameisjOhn.
“MC MuRli is really turning things up at the moment. Look out for him. He is working with mynameisjOhn at the moment and the live show is about to get more grand. I’m writing more now, I’m keeping my eyes straight on his notepad asking, ‘what are you writing?’
“I gotta write something to beat that”, he laughs.
Live on stage at the launch gig in July ‘Rusangano / Family’ was delivered harder and faster in a mish mash of frenetic noisy soul with contributions from fellow Random Acts of Kindness member MuRli and Winding’s Stephen Ryan. It is an entirely different experience from the album version and that energy from the stage draws the audience along with the music. Witnessed live, this act is a very communal experience.
God Knows says: “Anybody can enjoy us performing. ‘Rusangano / Family’ is nice but it comes to life live. We strongly believe in togetherness and family. We have a welcoming atmosphere. It is something that brings people together, they don’t need to put a name to it. It comes from the soul saying ‘let’s go crazy together and bring the racket’.
“That is exactly what’s going to happen in Dolan’s for the Summer Party. Once again we are going to light it up for the people that have been supporting us the most.”
‘Rusangano / Family’, the debut album from God Knows and mynameisjOhn, is available now on bandcamp.com
Dolan’s Summer Party featuring God Knows and mynameisjOhn, R.S.A.G, Moscow Metro, Elaine Mai and many more happens in four venues at Dolan’s on Saturday August 23.