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Steppin' Into Lago Lago: Friday

It’s an exciting year for the Steppin’ family. After our hosting at Motel Mozaïque, another festival collaboration is coming up. On the 28th, 29th and 30th of June, we are hosting a stage at Lago Lago! The festival takes place in the middle of nature park Stroombroek and is centered around an idyllic lake surrounded by a beach and a forest, perfect for those warm summer days. At Lago Lago, we will celebrate the summer and bring you the freshest sounds. Amongst the packed line-up, with artists like Antal, CARISTA, KC The Funkaholic, SIEM, Coloray, David Vunk, Elias Mazian, Suze Ijo, Ineffect, Weval and many more, you can find a handful of artists from the Steppin’ family, who we will introduce to you in this three-part series, starting with Friday.


Steppin' Into Tomorrow 

Founded in 2021 by Lucas Benjamin and Mo Wrights, the Steppin’ family has slowly but surely grown beyond the base city of Amsterdam. With all our different ventures, such as panel talks, interactive musical history lessons, club nights, live studio sessions, release events, radio take-overs, film screenings and collaborations, we’re constantly looking out to deepen and broaden our vision, including our community.


Getting the opportunity to host a stage at a festival like Lago Lago, we focus on uniting, connecting and inspiring lovers, admirers and curious aficionados of soul, jazz, funk, R&B, hip-hop, soulful house, broken beat, and everything related to these realms of music. We take the opportunity to push new talent, and offer them a platform. This is why, for the lineup for Lago Lago, you will see a combination of new projects, fresh names, and Steppin' OGs. We take this as an opportunity to bring together a wide and diverse range of artists with ties to Steppin', from DJs who have participated in our Mixed Feelings Series, to the founders of Steppin' and from artists who have played at our events before to the newest projects from people within our community. Now, let's introduce:


Kay Tee & Lucas Benjamin 

None other than our own Kay Tee & Lucas Benjamin have the honour to open the festival with their set on the Cabana stage. These two, being key parts of the Steppin' Family, truly know the Steppin’ sound. Next to opening the Festival, the duo also opens Lola’s, the stage hosted by Steppin’, a couple of hours later.


Lucas & Kay Tee through the lens of Tijmen de Nooy at Bimhuis


Lucas’ first encounters with music started at an early age. As a son of a DJ and musician, he was automatically nourished with a broad selection of sounds. However, his true passion for music evolved when he started b-boying (breakdancing) at the age of twelve. Unifying his mind, body and soul with tribal drum breaks, powerful horn sections and soulful vocals made him experience the true essence of jazz, soul and funk. Besides being a dancer he also had a great interest in music and its history. And so he spent hours and hours in record stores, educating himself by analysing numerous LPs and CDs and eventually starting his vinyl collection. Both as Steppin' Into Tomorrow co-founder and as a DJ, Lucas aims to explore the groovy and jazz-oriented musical landscape, with a focus on homegrown talent, new sounds and educating the audience about all things jazz.



Kay Tee, a valued member of Steppin’ Into Tomorrow, is an Amsterdam-based free spirit, Bratislava born & raised, though previous time spent living across continents got pieces of her heart spread throughout various corners of the world. As a dedicated record collector and a sucker for (neo) soul, 70s jazz-funk & sample-heavy hip hop, she prefers to communicate through the frequencies of sound nestled in vinyl grooves. Venturing into the realms of infectious basslines, captivating tunes, and soothing rhythms, Kay Tee is constantly exploring new waters for your soul to float on & connect to.



LEnTO (live)

LEnTO is a collaborative project by Ghent-based siblings Tomas and Helena Casella. Steppin’ fans might already know Helena from her show at the Super-Sonic Jazz x Steppin’ Family Night at Tolhuistuin or from playing with Radiohop at the Vondelpark (including an interview with Steppin’). 



With this new project, the duo reinforces individual creativity within a unified sound. With each’s own repertoire, they introduce their compositions to a new duo format, creating unexpected depths and surprising variations of their sound. The Ghent-based siblings, both having finished their conservatory studies, have been joint in musicality since birth and grew up in highly artistic surroundings brought by their family. This naturally resolved into an alliance to help manifest the music of their personal journeys, intimately and genuinely.


Hailing Brazilian heritage, LEnTO merges samba with soul, jazz and hip hop and holds substantial inspiration from artists by the likes of Marcos Valle, Arthur Verocai, Sergio Mendes and many more. Misty textures, vintage harmonies and vigorous rhythms support bright melodies that will linger on, and on, and on, guiding us into the night. 



Marcos Tocae

We continue the Brazilian sounds with the Amsterdam-based and Brazilian-born DJ Marcos Torcae. His love for music started at a young age. With his father being a DJ, the house was always filled with music and records. His first record was a gift from his grandparents when he was only 7. It was from a well-known pagode (samba style) group from Brazil, called Só Pra Contrariar. The first one he bought himself was 'Black Caesar' by James Brown.


In 2018, Marcos felt it was time to share his music taste with the world by sharing it on his Instagram. In an interview with Steppin’ in 2021 (as part of the ‘Mixed Feelings’ series), Marcos explains: “Toca aê’ is an expression In Portuguese-BR you use when asking someone to play something, in a slang way, or even if you want to mock a friend haha. It could be to play an instrument, a song on your phone, etc. Also when giving a handshake or high-five someone you can say: Toca aê haha.”



At Lago Lago, Marcos Tocae will take us on a journey through a range of genres and sounds, from Funk, Soul, Jazz, Rap, and R&B to the vast world of Brazilian styles and beyond. 



Sons of Jumira (live)

Next up, we have another new and exciting project coming up; Sons of Jumira. This trio, comprised of double bassist Julian Tjon Sack Kie, drummer Mill Voyance, and harpist Ranie Ribeiro, is 'rooted in a fusion of cultural inspirations and a commitment to pushing sonic boundaries (...) with a focus on genuine improvisation and expressive experimentation." Together, they form a formidable trio, each contributing their distinctive voice to the collective sound that defines Sons Of Jumira's live performances.'

Picture by @roemer.zip


Besides some short recordings (like the one below and a couple of shots on Ranie's Instagram) there is still a lot to be revealed about this project, but if we look at what Ranie has previously done, we can expect an experimental take on a multitude of genres and influences (like he has done with classical, electronica and hip-hop) all brought together into carefully composed melodies and songs.



Razzmic

Razzmic grew up in the nineties and zeroes: a golden era for R&B, jazzy sample-heavy

hip-hop and neo-soul jams - that’s where the foundation for their broad musical taste was laid out. Eventually throwing themselves into electro, jazz, boogie and spacey spirituals from

teenage years on, Razzmic has developed a preference for mellow keys, broken beats,

mesmerizing fusion and clubby cross-overs over the years.


Pictures by Julia Hermans


At Lago Lago we can expect a set full of sucker punches and highly dynamic tracks where catchy melodics are counterbalanced by heavy bass. They identify deeply with the idea of every style being related in some way: like a funky drummer break paired with a dub siren, the grooves and breaks go hand-in-hand throughout musical rollercoaster rides full of bruk, breakbeat, rhythms, high-energy belters, sassy house, leftfield electronics, boogie edits and footwork. As the organizer of Maquillage, the newest groove night in Utrecht, Razzmic have proven to add their warm, colourful flavour to the nightlife either in front of and behind the decks.



 

Steppin' Into Tomorrow stands with artists & labels and encourages listeners to support them by buying their music directly from Bandcamp. If you've enjoyed this article, please consider subscribing to our monthly newsletter to stay in the loop.

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