‘No Unga Bunga’ is the new single by French-born Cameroonian producer James BKS, released via Idris Elba’s 7Wallace and James BKS’ own label Grown Kid. ‘No Unga Bunga’ is the first track to be taken from his forthcoming album released March 2021.
James’ music is a perfect crossover of his African roots (a nod to his father, the legendary late Cameroonian saxophonist Manu Dibango) and urban hip hop sensibility – having grown up in the US and produced for the likes of Talib Kweli, Snoop Dogg, and Mr Eazi as well as French music icons Booba and Soprano.
With a sample of the Super Beagle classic ‘Dust A Sound Boy’ looped throughout over James BKS’ signature sound rich in percussion, ‘No Unga Bunga’ touches on self-belief, heritage and grief. With the sad loss of his father to COVID-19 earlier this year, James BKS grapples with continuing and embracing his father’s legacy (“Mama said go be great, bloodline royal in your vein”), while also reflecting on his career as a DJ, producer and songwriter. ‘No Unga Bunga’ ponders his internal battle and his desire to stand on his own and create his own lane.
James BKS explains “This song is about me embracing my path no matter how hard or long the road to success might be. ‘No Unga Bunga is about heritage, not material things but what is truly meaningful and precious: education, love, lessons, advice, time”.
The accompanying video shows James BKS in a post-apocalyptic universe, featuring French Krump champion, Luka Austin, Senegalese model Mame-Anta Wade (Fenty, YSL) and Guinean dancer and contortionist Abdoulaye Keita. The video was brought to life by French director Mahine Sef (Runtown, DJ Arafat, Memphis Depay), watch it here.