KALAF is best known as one of the founding MCs of Buraka Som Sistema, a rambunctious music project that burst out of a Lisbon nightclub and onto the global stage in 2006. The group fused contemporary European electronic dance music with kuduro, a frantic Angolan dance beat developed when Kalaf was growing up there in the 1980s. Their bringing kuduro to the mainstream permanently altered the global club music scene.
But KALAF has also made a name for himself as a writer, becoming a prominent essayist and cultural critic in the Portuguese-speaking world. KALAF’s broad appeal, from young club-goers to middle-aged newspaper readers, is proving useful in his mission to unify the Portuguese-speaking world, traversing borders drawn up during colonisation to bring the people of his homeland and his chosen home together.