Rwandan DJs have what it takes to make it big – DJ T-Roy

Ghanaian DJ and music producer T. Roy (donning a black and white T-shirt) mixing the music with his colleagues, on Wednesdays. / Craish Bahizi

He is one of the top African DJs, music producers, and an artist based in the UK, and was recently in Rwanda to hold a masterclass. 
T-Roy partnered with Afrogroov Group on a project dubbed “A journey across the black Atlantic”, which aims to improve the quality of African music, and the wellbeing of African artistes.

The project provides master classes in music and production to students, where upcoming artistes are encouraged and helped to develop their creativity in music.
The experienced DJ was born in Ghana and raised in the UK from the age of 3. T-Roy was recently in the country on a music tour and caught up with The New Times’ Bertrand Byishimo to discuss his experience and share insights on what drives him to become of the very best on the continent.

Who is T-Roy?

I’m a Ghanaian music producer, based in London UK. I own a label called Broadcite Music Label which focuses on Afro-house, electronic hybrid music that we put on our record label. I am also a DJ.
Tell us about your music career?
I’ve been doing music for the past 18 years. I started as an MC, and then a producer. I had a few record label deals, so I decided to start my own independent label in 2001, in London. From there, we were being able to move around the world, performing in festivals and clubs.
How will your project impact the music industry in Rwanda?
We spent two days at Nyundo School of Art and Music, conducting classes with the students, and we recorded a track with the students, which was great. We also spent some nights exchanging with Rwandan DJs which was good.

This was aimed to help Rwandan DJs to create their own sound and cement their legacy. We also held a masterclass with Rwandan DJs and members of the music industry which also turned out well. Through this, we have been able to share experiences and good practices. I believe through such partnerships there is a lot we can do to empower the industry.
Did you pursue any music classes?
I didn’t study music formally. I studied computer engineering, and I was doing music aside as something I am passionate about. It was out of choice that I decided to transition from what I studied to what I am doing today because of the passion I have for music.
Why did you choose to come to Rwanda?
One of our partners is Afrogroov Group run by the Rwandan DJ and music promoter, Eric Soul. He has many connections in London because he used to live there but he also understands the concept of what we are trying to do. We chose Rwanda because Rwanda is special country that is progressive. We believe there is a lot we can do together to advance music in Rwanda. From what I have noticed from my interactions, Rwanda DJ and MCs have what it takes to make it big, not only in Rwanda but the continent, given the opportunity.
What popular projects have you worked on?
Apart from producing my own music, I also produce for others. You can look up my songs such as “Push me”, “Watching you”, featuring a South African vocalist Melody Jones, and a UK MC, called “Tie”. I’ve also produced some music for a Congolese band called Kasai Masai. Most of my works can be found online.

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