“Derek Beres is part reporter and part prophet standing in the middle of the eye of the World Music storm that is raining new musical genres on the Earth today, each one fused by the love of song and spirit.” – Krishna Das
The dark scent of cigarettes mingles with fragrant apple tobacco. A mist hovering over the crowd, one can barely notice the array of characters comprising the scene. Inside the candle-lit walls of the Lower East Side’s Kush, the colors and names are as vast as the New York City outside: dreadlocked Rastas concealing herbs with incense, turbaned Sikhs laying back layers of cocktails, Indian vixens prancing poetically from table to table, native Brooklynites sizing up newfound Manhattanites as the DJ plays a soundtrack familiar to everyone, keeping time in a time where time seems to stop mattering.
There’s a new mythology being lived outside the sourcebooks of scholars and halls of history. Every day around the world musicians are taking their cultural sounds and layering them into computers, splicing, slicing and redefining the parameters of their ancestors. An endless opportunity is being taken advantage of by DJs and classical musicians alike, sitting on the edge of music’s digital revolution. This is where the sacred meets the profane in unbridled harmony, a sonic commonplace for countries to stop wars and begin war dances. For the beat being created is blind to difference, accepting all sound.
Global Beat Fusion traces this electronic evolution. For the past three years I’ve covered the emerging sound of global electronica for dozens of magazines, spending two-and-a-half editing America’s largest international music publication. During the same period I’ve toured internationally as a DJ, exposing the newest sounds to audiences in clubs, lounges, living rooms, bars and multi-day festivals. For the past year, as a resident DJ at New York’s Kush and Nublu, I’ve played for thousands of people all asking the same question: What is this music?
Ror musicians worldwide, the digital age is allowing them to take traditional and sacred instruments and place them into an electronic rhythm, which can then be downloaded by anyone, anywhere. Better still, these same artists are touring globally, taking their sonic mission directly into the hearts and ears of eclectic venues. In the center of this movement, I’ve been DJing weekly, all who come for the music they won’t hear anywhere else. Yet, as is becoming obvious, that won’t be the case much longer. The fringe is becoming the center.
Global Beat Fusion is navigating the course as it unfolds. What’s building is a cultural/social soundscape never before known to humanity, for the pockets are developing simultaneously. The many are becoming one, and the one is being processed by a Mac. In theory it’s the same as it ever was: humans creating song to touch something beyond. Only now we’re doing it in rhythm. Published on 6.21.05, Global Beat Fusion is the backbeat of the music of the spheres, the written heartbeat of humanity’s greatest soundtrack to date.