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Sasha Perera’s live-wire performances as Jahcoozi’s electric front woman have catapulted the band into the global electronic music landscape, but not as many fans are aware of her penchant for belting out eclectic DJ sets. From dub to techno, house and dance hall, her gigs are a trip through some of the world’s most cutting-edge music. None this comes as a surprise, considering that Perera’s influences are as varied as her DJ sets.



From rare Zambian rock from the ‘70s or Congotronics, which is the rage right now, Perera has always had an ongoing relationship with music from Africa. She also grew up on a diet of jungle, drum n bass, dub, trip hop and IDM as a teenager in London.  “I’m a fan of electronic music with organic elements in there, so there’s loads of organic music I’m into,” she said. “I love weird hip hop too like J Dilla or Madlib or lo-fi stuff like Moondog.”



Journeying even further back, the singer remembers buying pirated tapes in Singapore for $1 with “all the hideous ‘80s hits on them” when she was a little kid. The bhajans at the local temple, an Abba record that her parents owned, a Wham tape on her Sony Walkman, piano lessons from her mum, Top of the Pops on the BBC, John Lennon being shot dead, Boy George’s ‘Karma Chameleon’, Bharatnatyam lessons with a “scary dragon woman who taught us” are the other elements that entered her soundscape early on.


Her entry into the world of electronic music, however, took place in London. “London in the ‘90s was a time when new sounds were always evolving and it’s something I was inspired by,” she said. “I didn’t actually get around to recording stuff with people until I got to Berlin, where I just met people who I felt comfortable making music with. It was an anything-goes approach and our band/project Jahcoozi was born in 2002.”