Got an email last week from a French netlabel called, of all things, ZUNG ZENG, which, apparently & admirably, “aims to release dub and electronic music under Creative Common licence.” Cue promo —
I checked it out, and a few of the tracks really sizzle and pop. Worked some into my set on Monday at Beat Research to good effect, at both 140bpm and somewhere around 100. But of course, for obvious reasons, I was most intrigued by the label’s name. Their rep, Ramon, was happy to indulge my curiosity:
Of course i can tell you about the name
By this netlabel, we aims to release eclectic and original electronic music based on the power of jamaican grooves.
Zung Zeng is a shortcut from the famous king Yellowman track’s “Zungguzung Guguzung Guzeng” which is for us an iconic ragga tune with simple but so efficient riddim.
Using a transformed existing name is a way to follow the “remix (or re-use) tradition” that takes place in Jamaican music history and in electronic music in more general.
Music can be composed/produced from scratch, but it can be made by transforming and adding existing materials and we like both ways.
In other words, we’re open to sampling and we affirm that by taking our name from something existing and well known.
I hope this basic description helps you. I know it’s just a little but (as you probably noticed) i’m really bad in writing..
Please, feel free to ask me anything else if you need..
And so I followed:
Thanks for the info about the name; your writing is fine! I’m very curious about your choice of that Yellowman track in particular, as it has been the subject of some research of mine for many years now. Was there any reason that you picked that song? Just liked the name? Have you messed around with the Zunuguzung/Diseases/MadMad riddim?
To which —
Why do we pick this song name?
Of course because we love the song and especially the riddim. But also because of the name that is very uncommon and have no sense (for us at least i mean)
So for the madness of the name too.
(and the name of this song sounds really “raggamuffin” i think, so that’s good for a name)
I’m not sure how grateful the folks at ZUNG ZENG are to learn that they’ve been proceeding with a valid interpretation of the term, but they sure seemed psyched that I played their tracks at the club. I told Ramon to let me know if they ever take a swing at their namesake source material.