Being long term attendees of Glastonbury, we knew we had to book our flights when we heard the Beat Hotel stage was travelling to Marrakech.
Housed in the luxurious Fellah Hotel, a boutique environment just south of the city, the festival carried a sense of intimacy usually associated with private parties. The unique location was framed with stunning views of the Atlas Mountains and boasted a cross-section of carefully programmed music, world renowned chefs, films, workshops and talks from some of today’s great minds.
Despite unfortunate weather conditions on Saturday and a want for a more diverse offering of Moroccan artists, the festival’s inaugural year had a lot going for it. The intimate live shows, talks by leading cultural commentators, poolside sessions with the likes of Gilles Peterson and late night secret villa parties gave Beat Hotel Marrakech a first outing that will no doubt see it return.
We took the opportunity to link up with a handful of up and coming artists to discuss what travel means to them and get an insight into the creative scene in their respective hometowns.
Kat La Kat a deep house DJ, producer and sound engineer from South Africa that has earned somewhat legendary status over the past few years, largely thanks to his ‘Deep Vibes’ mix series.
We spoke to Kat La Kat about his thoughts on travel and the creative process. To him, existing as an artist in your community alone is limiting – you’re in a bubble. Experiencing the unknown is key and travel unlocks “a whole different world” of fresh experiences. “You pick up a lot of things you can use in your own creativity”.
Having grown up in Pretoria, he relocated to Johannesburg to experience diversity and the underground music scene. “Jo’burg is a melting pot of different cultures. It’s the biggest economy in the country, so there are a lot of people from all over either just visiting or actually moving here. They’re always bringing their culture and influences that inspire the music scene. The city has a lot of platforms for different kinds of music and the underground scene is really healthy.”
For all you music heads that are planning a trip to Jo’burg, make sure you check out Kat La Kat’s guide for the best hidden gems.