Member of founding Australian rap group Bad Reputation, and lead vocalist for Buddhafied, William “Buda” Almeida, whose career spans three decades and includes supporting the likes of Ice Cube, Ice T and Run DMC, announces the release of Blackbelt Production after a seven-year hiatus.
Released through the rejuvenated Straight From The Art imprint under strict COVID-19 conditions, Black Belt Production was recorded and produced with multi-instrumentalist Stephen Cummins, who is best known for collaborating with Kate Ceberano, Skunkhour and Jackie Orzacksky.
Originally from Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, the seasoned Sydney performer famed for mixing fat bass lines and swinging hip hop beats delivering a similarly progressive sound to that of Flying Lotus, this time fusing funk-driven guitars with rich Brazilian percussion. “I locked myself away and started writing music, partly because I was frustrated with not being able to play gigs in front of a live audience – which is what musicians thrive on – or train as I regularly do as a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt,” says Buda, who is known for producing, arranging and performing all of his material. It ended up being an incredibly creative, cathartic time that resulted in more than 30 new tracks that capture the emotional rollercoaster of being locked down. Blackbelt Production the introduction to this jazz-inflected and funk-directed catalog of dissertations.
The return of Buda is complemented by the revival of Straight From The Art. What was once a fleeting major label compilation of Australian Hip Hop compiled on the eve of the genre’s explosion has been reclaimed and is now a home for the diversity Australia’s great variety of Hip Hop artists.