Afro DZ ak

Afro DZ ak

BandHip HopSpoken Word

redefining versatility with dope rhymes, politically charged spoken word poetry, smooth trumpet playing, hot beats, and an infectious socially conscious vibe

Biography

Afro DZ ak (aka Pete Shungu) www.afrodzak.com is an accomplished spoken word artist, a socially-conscious MC/rapper, and he plays trumpet in two hard-to-categorize soulful bands: The Eclectic Collective and Soul Movement
plus a Boston-based jazz trio, Black White and the Blues. He is a triple threat with Soul Movement, playing trumpet, keyboard and kickin rhymes on the mic as well. He has also been known to kick some rhymes with The Eclectic Collective.

Afro DZ ak has been playing trumpet and piano for over 13 years and writing and performing rhymes & poetry for about 6. He has performed at numerous venues in Boston including The Middle East, Harpers Ferry, The Roxy, The Paradise Lounge, Lizard Lounge, many area colleges, and at out of state venues such as Nuyorican Café in NYC, and Black Lily in Philly. Currently he hosts the Boston-area hip hop series Hip Hop Anonymous at Harpers Ferry.

Afro DZ ak is not just an MC, but a self-described 'part-time musician, full-time advocate for positive social change'. He has done presentations on hip hop, creative expression, social justice, and making good choices at many area schools and youth organizations, was a frequent performer at the monthly socially-conscious open mic Critical Breakdown in Boston, was selected to perform at the event 'Hip Hop & Politics' at The Blue Wave Cafe in July '04, and has performed at many other social-justice related events. He has also been a Big Brother in the Big Brothers of Mass. Bay program for over 6 years and is the College Liaison for the multiracial organization SwirlBoston

Afro DZ ak was born on January, 19, 1981 in Princeton, NJ, to a father from the heartland of Africa (Democratic Republic of Congo/formerly Zaire), and a mother from the heartland of the U.S. (Kansas). A jersey boy born & raised, he attended Lawrence Township Public Schools through high school, then left the friendly confines of the Dirty Jerz for the frigid winters of New England to attend college at Tufts University in Medford, MA. After graduation, he served as an Americorps*VISTA for a year at a college in Worcester, MA, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS), through the Americorps program Massachusetts Campus Compact. Upon completion of his year of service, he continued living and working in Worcester as MCPHS's first Community Outreach Coordinator. In fall 2006, he will be leaving this position to move to Somerville, MA, work at a Boston-area non-profit organization, and spend more time on music.

Afro DZ ak is featured on The Eclectic Collective's debut release, "Time Flies", Soul Movement's debut CD, "Get Away," Project: Think Different's 'Empowerment' CD (see blog entry), and an instrumental CD entitled "Inthrumental" produced/released by good friend Gnotes. While in college, Afro D recorded his first hip hop tracks, collaborations with his younger brother and best friend Nick aka "Mooks". The two have collaborated on numerous tracks, despite geographical limitations (Nick was all the way down in North Carolina, going to school at Duke). Two of these collaborations were featured on the CDs "Jumbo Audio Project" vols. 1 & 2, compilations of music by recording artists at Tufts University. Afro D is currently beginning work on a solo hip hop album which will feature his talents through rhymes, poetry, trumpet, and beats as well. Afro D makes beats under the alias 'DJ Wembi.' Wembi is his Congolese name given at birth and means 'musician' in Otetela.

Influences include: Common, J-Live, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, The Roots, A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, The Perceptionists, Little Brother, Unspoken Heard, Binary Star, Pharcyde, Hieroglyphics, Blue Scholars, Cunninlynguists, Immortal Technique, Omekongo Dibinga, Sarah Jones, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Pete Rock, Musiq Soulchild, Paris (France), and natural beauty

Discography

singles:
"Thinking Cap"- featured on the CD "Empowerment: The Power to Break You Free" put out by Boston-area non-profit Project:Think Different

albums:
"Get Away"- 10 track album recorded with the band Soul Movement

"Time Flies"- 10 track album recorded with the band The Eclectic Collective

Set List

all original music:
tracks include:
Too Cold
All the Things You Are
Lights, Camera, or Action
On the Road
Little Things (w/ Agyeman of The Eclectic Collective)
Vibe Out (w/ Noni Kai of The Eclectic Collective)
and many more
can easily do sets of upwards of an hour, or shorter as needed