We could call this band “Unity of vision” because it’s really a mix off many influences and friendship around the world! Ska and Rock-Steady music.
All began with Fred. At the young age of eight, Fred Rafhay watched his grandfather playing the trumpet and instantly became inspired. Driven by his innate passion for music and the desire to emulate his grandfather, Fred went to music school to master the trumpet. He found that it would be two years before he could actually play music, so he became discouraged and left. Years passed and he made his career as a Professional Boxer, but still his mind remained distracted by the soul of the trumpet. So in 2002 with Manu, a real friend for ages, they made they first steps. Playing and playing…
The same year, during a live performance of The Skatalites, Fred found himself close to the stage, face to face with Kevin “KB” Batchelor, his musical icon. KB’s performance energized Fred and he studied each skillful movement, knowing he, too, would master the trumpet. At that point they became aware that music was the essence off their life. Months later, at yet another Skatalites performance, Kevin ‘KB’ Batchelor pulled Fred onto the stage realizing one of Fred’s greatest dreams- performing with The Skatalites
Finally they met Gontran with his bass and Laurent the drummer. They never separate until today and build a strong friendship. This is the foundations of their music. Laurent is probably born with a sticks drum in his hands!
In 2003 Fred made a meeting, looked for a singer, second brass, and pave the way of their first band called Magwalé Freedom, fusing the sounds of Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady, and Afro-Beat. In the Spring of 2004, they produced their debut CD, Arretez Vos Machines, right out of his home studio, using state-of-the-art equipment.
From 2004 to 2006 they made more than 100 shows around Belgium and France. 2006 with this strong first experience Fred decided with Laurent to create a project known as ‘Freddy Loco,’ which is dedicated to the traditional Brass sounds of Ska & Rocksteady.
Another turning point is the meeting between Fred and Nicolas Léonard from the moon invaders. Nicolas became the producer and they started to work on the first album of Freddy loco, due out in 12 september 2007, with Sidney Mills (Steel Pulse.) on the mix in NYC. Kevin Batchelor also came on the project to make us a real favour with some wonderful trumpet chorus.
2008 was a successful year of touring in Benelux. (Around 50 dates)
They can be seen performing everywhere around Belgium and France also with New York’s very own, New York Ska Jazz Ensemble, Kevin Batchelor, Cedric “I’m” Brooks, The Skatalites, Rotterdam Ska Jazz Foundation, Dom N’toumos,The Caroloregians, The Aggrolites...
2009 They finished a new record with Nicolas Léonard, due out around july 2009, with some great guest... Rock steady Freddie from NYSJE, Kevin Batchelotr and Cedric Brooks! On the mix for this releasre the genius Victor Rice. On the famous Ska label; Megalith records. They are on tour to promote it...