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The Voodoo Laksa Tour

The Voodoo Laksa Tour brings two powerhouses of Australian hip-hop together to perform their potent, political  and poetic music. Birdz performs from his critically acclaimed album Train of Thought while rapper/poet/author Omar Musa brings to life his latest album Since Ali Died. Both artists spoke to Off The Leash. 

Birdz – how did this collaboration come about? And where did the  fabulous tour name come from?  It’s like a name just MADE for a Darwin show! 

We connected a while back through mutual friends and I’ve always had big respect for what Omar does as a lyricist and poet. We’ve both just dropped projects, so doing a tour together now just makes perfect sense. As for the name of the tour – Omar has a song called ‘Laksa’ and I have a song called ‘Hunger Voodoo’. We put them together and you get The Voodoo Laksa Tour. It was as simple as that, really. We can’t wait to hit D-Town – for the show and the laksa!

Birdz – can you tell me why you wanted to join forces with Omar? If there was one piece of poetry or music of his that you had to pick to introduce someone to his work, what would it be?

I think we share a similar drive to share our stories in a way that really connects with people on a deeper level, and in turn generates a greater awareness of where we come from. Omar’s poetry and music are equally dope and the message always stays strong throughout. I feel as though that’s something we have in common – making a conscious decision to utilise music as a platform to make bangers with substance. If there was one tune to share right now I’d say ‘Assimilate’, featuring Tasman Keith.

Omar – same question for you! Why did you want to team up with Birdz? And what’s the piece of music of his that you’d play if you were introducing someone to his music for the first time?

Birdz has a fresh, unique style that is absolutely his own. He sounds like no-one else and is grappling with really big issues in his music in a playful, cool way. If I was introducing someone to his music, I’d show them ‘Rise’, featuring Jimblah. It’s anthemic, moving, inspiring and just goes hard.

Omar – what’s the gig going to look like? Are you each just doing your own thing – or will you perform together? 

We will definitely collaborate towards the end of the set. It’ll be like Captain Planet – “when our powers combine!” I think the show will be really fun and high energy, hopefully bringing everyone into a really heightened state where they can dance and think at the same time. When I’m performing, I give the crowd everything that I’ve got.

For the both of you – you’re both very passionate storytellers –  what are the issues that are really igniting your creativity at the moment? Are they personal or political or both? 

Omar: A balance of both. We’re sur-rounded by chaos and injustice and a world of political and religious violence, so I try to meditate on that, as well as my place in it. But I am equally inspired to write by personal matters, like falling in and out of love, friendship or meeting someone interesting on the bus and hearing some unexpected wisdom from them. We live in a whirlwind of stories. Sometimes you’ve just got to be brave enough to reach out and pluck one from the air.
Birdz: For me, rap has always been about sharing my own personal story and representing where I’m from and what I’m going through at any given time. Also, as an Aboriginal man in Australia I feel as though everything I do is scrutinised so much that it becomes political – whether it’s my intention or not. I take that energy, channel it into positive motivation and try to push the envelope as far as I can.

FRI 16 MAR | 8PM | RAILWAY CLUB | $28.50 |

Header image: Omar Musa

Thumbnail image: Birdz

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