Young producer makes mark in America

HARARE - Philip “Pip” Kembo (24) has joined the ranks of Zimbabwean music producers making a mark in the United States of America.

Pip, as the young music producer is known among his peers, recently moved to Los Angeles, California where he joined fellow Zimbabwean producer and childhood friend Tinashe “T- Collar” Sibanda, who co-produced Rita Ora and Chris Brown’s hit song, Body On Me.

The former St. George’s College student is grateful to T- Collar and Grammy-winning Zimbabwean producer Brian Soko who has produced for Beyonce, Drake and Lil Wayne.

“I also work with Brian (Soko) after having been introduced to him by Tinashe. Tinashe and Brian have done a good job of giving us a blueprint of how a Zimbabwean producer can make it in America. I am lucky to have such great examples to follow,” said Pip.

Pip’s extraordinary talent has already led him to work with several American producers who include Sermstyle (producer for Kesha, Pitbull and Flo-Rida), Dani Ivory (Pianist for Cee Lo Green and Beyonce), B-ham (producer for Ty Dolla Sign), Lovy (Grammy nominated producer for Iggy Azelia) and Scribz Riley (producer for Tove Lo, Wiley and JLS).

Pip concedes that his career path has not been a bed of roses.

“Pursuing an unconventional career path can be a bit daunting but I hope my story can inspire just a few to have the courage to chase their dreams,” he said.

The young music producer was born and raised in Harare where he discovered his passion for music at Hartmann House Primary School.

“I used to play in the marching band at school and I was in all the choirs. I started to notice how happy it would make me to be around music and contribute to making it,” Pip recalled.

He was later introduced to a music production programme by a friend and that marked the beginning of his journey to being a producer.

“It started out as a hobby, but when I saw how my friend reacted to the music I started to take it more seriously,” he said.

Pip went on to attend St. George’s College and by 2010 had produced songs for a number of popular local artists such as Simba Tagz and DJ Macson.

In 2011 he joined Lancaster University in England to pursue a degree in marketing but that did not stop his pursuit of music. Later in that year he teamed up with DJ Sion (MTA Records) to produce “Other Side of The Moon” and “Rubix Cube” which were released on Allusion Records and Codus Records respectively. Both songs reached the number one position on their label charts.

“Working with Sion taught me the importance of understanding different markets and tastes when creating music for consumers,” he said.

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