Ibaaku, the latest of a string of names multidisciplinary artist Stephen Bassene has given himself, is an artist on the move: ethereal, propelled by an eclectic and insatiable appetite for sound. He’s a producer, multi-instrumentalist, author, composer and radio wizard, who’s artistic path began in the 1990s in Dakar with the group Still.
Ibaaku then multiplied his collaborations with numerous artists in the Senegalese hip hop scene, before starting his own solo career. He collaborated with Xuman and Keyti’s Journal Rappé, the highly popular rapped TV news, and is one of the founding members of the group I Science, which has been evolving since 2008. Most recently, his collaboration with Senegalese stylist SRK Selly Raby Kane for the musical production of the ‘Alien Cartoon’ fashion show and art performance, gave birth to his solo musical project under the same name.
The project, described as ‘Afro-hypnotique expérimental’, came from a crazy challenge to transform, for one evening, Dakar’s old train station into an extra-terrestrial base, and to immerse the public into a surrealist world with a poetic and futuristic atmosphere. Alien Cartoon is a projection through time and space, an inquiry into Dakar as a city of the future. ‘Ibaaku accomplished a surrealist feat by transforming fragmented, chaotic sounds into a harmonious and baffling opus. He is a brilliant spirit,’ Selly Raby Kane said of the music.
Since 2014 Ibaaku hosts the very popular Good Vibes program on Vibe Radio in Dakar. Through this new role, he creates a solid fan base, which follows his adventures live and direct every afternoon on weekdays.