Carl & The Reda Mafia
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Carl & The Reda Mafia

Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Blues Funk


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Psyched about opening for Bon Jovi"

Funk/blues quartet Carl & The Reda Mafia is not even a year old, but they are already set to open for American rockers Bon Jovi next month at the band’s concert at du Arena, Dubai. Formed in October 2014 by singer-songwriter Carl Fernais – who is from Kochi, Kerala — the Dubai-based band so far have only one single to their name, and are currently working on their debut album. Frenais says, “About a few months ago, (music promoters) White Cube were considering us for the opening act at the Bon Jovi concert. We were psyched just to know that we were being pitched to play that show. We were waiting impatiently for the decision and almost lost hope as we moved closer to the date, until we heard the news that we got selected. We were blown away!”

Last year, Carl & The Reda Mafia won Dubai’s prestigious Bandjam Battle Of The Bands. Their debut single “Fight For Your Queen” was also chosen for the UN HeForShe campaign in February this year. At du Arena, the band will play a one-hour set. Says Frenais, “We are thrilled to be playing on one of the biggest stages in this region, the du Arena. It’s an incredible opportunity for us also because we have not been together for that long.”

Apart from Carl who’s from India, the band consists of three members hailing from different countries. The lead guitarist and composer Tarek Reda is from Egypt, while the bassist, Christos Asimakopoulos, is from Greece. Drummer Abimola Durojaiye is from from Nigeria. - Rolling Stones

"INTERVIEW: Carl and The Reda Mafia"

How lucky do you have to be to form a band in October 2014, then open for Bon Jovi in front of 25,000 fans under a year later? As lucky as four-piece progressive funk band Carl and The Reda Mafia, apparently. The Dubai-based group, the first band to sign with UAE studio White Cube, next headline for rapper J Cole at this month’s Beats on the Beach in Abu Dhabi (Friday November 27), and we figured we ought to get to know them better before they get too inaccessibly famous.

How did all of you meet, and when was the moment you knew it’d work out?
Carl: I met Tarek Reda through a friend. I was a massive fan of his style and ability. Chris, our bassist, was in a band with Tarek at that time, and Bims, our drummer, I found on LinkedIn. We all had met for the first time at a jam space and went with the flow. We knew then that this was going to be special.

We all come from extremely different styles – Reda comes from a classic rock and rock’n’roll era, Chris from a metal background, Bims from gospel, and I come from Motown and country music. You might think we'd find it difficult to find common ground, but to be honest, the diversity in our influences is what makes our sound so fresh and unique.

You call your style “funk jam”…
Reda: The diversity in our influences formed a genre, which has primarily funk elements with rock n roll, blues-rock and pop fused in. It's a fused genre that would appeal to the rocker, the raver and the pop lover. Immediate musical influences include the John Mayer trio, Jonny Lang, and Dave Matthews band.

You’re opening for J Cole, a whole lot different from Bon Jovi last year. What's your plan of action for this gig?
Bims: J Cole being a Grammy nominated artist itself tells you he's got a world of talent and experience. The Bon Jovi experience was mind blowing. The fact that we were able to play Du Arena itself in less than a year as a band was hard to comprehend. The rush we got from playing to 25,000 people at Du Arena would surely help us at Beats on the Beach.

If you could open for anyone else next, who would it be?
Reda: For sure John Mayer. He's been a massive influence and we'd love to warm the crowd for him.

Are you going in any different/interesting directions with new and upcoming tracks? What are you working on, and how would you describe it?
Chris: Now since we're done recording our first album and it's been a year together as a band, we've found the direction we want to go which is using complex musical progressions, but at the same time, we want to keep the melodies simple and catchy so it doesn't go over people's heads. Our newer material clearly shows you the maturity of the band and how focused we've become.

Have you ever compared your following in Dubai with that in Abu Dhabi? Are you received different in each city? What's the fan vibe like?
Carl: We have, actually. I think the crowd in Abu Dhabi is more dedicated to supporting local acts and we see that with their passion towards the local artists. Dubai has more opportunities of course and the people here are still warming up to the indie music scene.

Do you already have any weird/fun fan stories you can share?
Carl: I was at church once, a day after the Du Arena gig. Across from me was a family who kept looking over and all of a sudden one of the kids ran up to me and said “my dad loves you”. I had to explain to people around me that I was in a band and it wasn't something weird.

If this band could finish off the year with a bang, how would you do it?
Reda: I'd like to say we'd enjoy doing something on the level of Beats on Beach or Du Arena, but truth is we'd like our next single to go viral and build up to our debut album "What the", to be released in January next year. - ShortList

"Singalong to Siri"

"Siri, what is one trillion to the tenth power?"
On the face of things it's not immediately obvious how this mindboggling mathematics question could inspire sweet music.
But it turns out the answer which the iPhone app Siri replies with is quite a decent beat. It's basically a one followed by a ridiculous number of zeros. And it's resulted in a series of musical collaborations - if a phone can be a musical collaborator - that have gone viral.
The US human beatboxer Marcus Perez posted his duet with Siri on his Facebook page and rapidly racked up more than 24 million views.

His video has been shared more than 385,000 times and encouraged others to uploading their own human beatbox versions.

One of the most creative versions was recorded in the United Arab Emirates and combines the Siri beat with beatboxing and Indian classical singing.
The beatboxer in the video is Carl Frenais, the frontman of a group called Carl & The Reda Mafia. The video was supposedly intended to be private and only shared amongst friends, but it was leaked and had more than 15 million views before it was taken down.
It has since been posted on the group's Facebook and picked up another five million views.
With numbers like that it's surely only a matter of time before we see Jay Z freestyling with Windows' Cortana and a particularly problematic equation. - BBC


Still working on that hot first release.


Feeling a bit camera shy