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Beauty and the beat with Akua ‘DJ Aries’ Afram

Mohamad Kadry (kadry@khaleejtimes.com) / 16 April 2014

We catch up with Akua ‘DJ Aries’ Afram as she gets set to premiere her ‘AfroBeats’ in Dubai

Akua ‘DJ Aries’ Afram is a woman who knows her way around the turntables.

The British-Ghanaian beauty, who’s debuting in Dubai with a pair of gigs this week, will be showing off her DJ skills using her signature AfroFusion beats.

Inspired by the sounds of Africa, Afram is known for mixing Afro-centric genres with hip-hop, dubstep, house and even Arabic music, which makes for a stand-out set wherever she performs.

“The reason for AfroFusion’s growing popularity is because I think people are looking for something new,” she explained.

“I’m into promoting African music as a whole, from Zouk to Angolan Kuduro.  It’s refreshing, shows that I’m doing something different and it’s always quite interesting seeing reactions from the crowd.”

Having worked behind-the-scenes in the entertainment industry for over a decade, taking over front-woman duties was a natural progression for Afram’s music career, representing what she cleverly calls the new “Afropolitan”.

“I’m quite charismatic during my set, performing and dancing. I also like to look good when I’m playing on the decks,” she adds cheekily, “and just because you look good they assume you’re not talented.”

So what’s it like being a female DJ in an industry dominated by men?

“A lot of women tend to be surprised by the fact that there are successful female DJs out there, while men have been quite supportive,” she said.

“There are in fact a lot of female DJs in the industry, but they don’t tend to stick together. I consider myself to be a girl’s girl, but sometimes it’s hard to get that union that men seem to have.”

Catch DJ Aries tonight at 2Liv nightclub in the Sofitel, Palm Jumeirah (free entry for ladies and mixed groups) and also Friday, April 18 at The Dek on 8 at Media One Hotel.

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