‘I think I have completed my cultural and creative mission’: Guts brings his new album to Section 8’s birthday bash

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‘I think I have completed my cultural and creative mission’: Guts brings his new album to Section 8’s birthday bash

Words by Luke Carlino

French hip-hop producer Guts will headline Section 8's 17th Birthday alongside Plastiq, Elle Shimada, Sai Galaxy and DJ sets from Nay Nay, Crybaby, Shelley, Mothafunk, Zjoso, and Pookie, with drink specials by Hop Nation, Jameson and Beefeater Gin.

If you have ever had a big night at Section 8, you’ll agree it makes sense that their 17th birthday celebration runs for three days. From Friday, March 17th to Sunday, March 19th, from 3pm until late each evening, you’ll be able to mark 17 years of good times with great music, dance shows, and drink specials.

On the Sunday of the three-day event, we strongly recommend making an effort to catch Guts’ Melbourne visit as part of his very first Australian tour to promote the new album Estrellas. We spoke with Guts (via a French-English interpreter) to gather his thoughts on the trip, the new album and his crate-digging tips.

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“As with every first time, I am driven by excitement, curiosity, and discovery. I’ve always been a fan of travel, even though now I try to reduce my carbon footprint as much as I can, I admit that it’s never very reasonable to go around the planet to play, but I had to come once in my life to set foot on this continent, it’s a little like a pilgrimage.”

As Guts lives in Spain, he has organised his tour in stages, starting with Thailand, then Japan and finishing in Australia. “I have gone from a city of 37 million people in Tokyo to a country of 26 million people in Australia. Here, it is the wide-open spaces and the diversity of the fauna that I love.”

Guts’ first album Le Bienheureux was released via Wax On Records, a label owned by revered producer Nightmares On Wax. The record performed at its best in Germany and Australia, and while Guts never made a trip in support of the record, he does have some Australian, and more so Melbourne, links as a result.

“I had invited Chet Faker a few years ago to come and sing on a track, but this track was never released; I believe I kept the demo in a safe at the sound bank. I adore this artist, by the way, but I’ve also followed beatmakers TA-KU and CABU for a while.”

Guts’ new album features a cross-section of covers and original compositions as a homage to Afro-Cuban music which Guts calls “a challenge to freedom, geography, politics and the past.”

The goal of the album was to bring together stars from Cuba, France, and Senegal to pay tribute to Afro-Cuban music, bringing Cuba back to Africa, as no Cuban musician had ever recorded in Dakar.

“Among Cuban descendants, many come from the triangular trade, so we find the African heritage in Cuban music, which is mixed with classical Spanish music, and then this music returned to Africa in the 50s and 60s. I gathered about 25 musicians in the studio to record Estrellas, and it was one of my best studio experiences with musicians of great talent and some virtuosos. I think I have completed my cultural and creative mission.”

As a famed crate digger, Guts is so excited about visiting the slew of iconic Melbourne record stores, he’s actually worked it in as an official part of his tour schedule. “I have a contact who has promised to take me for a walk and tour of the vinyl shops. I remember having two or three Australian soul-jazz and jazz-funk vinyls, like Daly-Wilson Big Band and especially the Back On The Street Again compilation, so I’m going to dig for this kind of music of the 70s-80s, maybe some psychedelic rock vinyl too!”

After his Australia visit, Guts will return to Europe to produce albums for Pat Kalla and K.O.G, along with a compilation record called Straight From The Decks 3. He will also organise a few festivals of his own to round out 2023, in what will be a very busy year in the Guts timeline.

Catch Guts at Section 8’s 17th birthday party on Sunday, March 19th, with support from Sai Galaxy (Live), Mothafunk and Al Gusto.

For all the details, check out the event page here.

This article was made in partnership with Section 8.