Buraka Som Sistema

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Buraka Som Sistema
Buraka Som Sistema performing at Mauer Park in 2013
Buraka Som Sistema performing at Mauer Park in 2013
Background information
OriginLisbon area, Portugal
GenresKuduro, breakbeat, zouk, alternative dance, moombahton
Years active2006–2016
Sony BMG
Aftercluv Dance Lab
Universal Music

Buraka Som Sistema was an electronic dance music project from Portugal, specializing in a fusion of techno beats with the African zouk and kuduro genre. It is generally credited with creating the "zouk bass" and "progressive kuduro" variant[1] and has received an MTV European Music Award.[2] In 2015 Buraka Som Sistema said they would be taking an hiatus starting in 2016, and on 1 July 2016 they performed live for the last time in Lisbon.


Buraka Som Sistema was founded in 2002 by Branko (João Barbosa), Rui Pité (DJ Riot), Andro Carvalho (Conductor) and Kalaf Ângelo Epalanga [pt].

Barbosa and Pité were producers from the Cool Train Crew collective, for which Kalaf was a frequent vocal collaborator. They were interested in creating a kuduro project, and had previously worked together as 1-UIK Project. They met Carvalho, a hip-hop producer from Angola and member of the hip-hop band Conjunto Ngonguenha, while he was in Portugal.[3]

Buraka Som Sistema is the Portuguese word for word translation for Buraka Sound System, keeping the English word order (the correct translation would be "Sistema de Som da Buraka"). They took their name, Buraka, from the freguesia (urban district) of Buraca, located in the municipality of Amadora, in the suburbs of Lisbon.


Their first release was From Buraka to the World [pt], an EP released on the Portuguese label Enchufada, which include the single "Yah!", featuring vocals by Angolan hip-hop MC Petty. It was followed by another Petty vocalized track, "Wawaba", and a re-release of From Buraka to the World, expanded to a full album.

After touring in several European countries, including playing at the Glastonbury Festival and Roskilde Festival,[3] the three producers released "Sound of Kuduro" in 2007, which features rapping by M.I.A., DJ Znobia, Saborosa and Puto Prata. The track was a precursor to their second album, Black Diamond, which was released in 2008 by Sony BMG, followed by a new single, "Kalemba (Wegue Wegue)", with vocals by Pongolove. They are currently signed on to Aftercluv Dance Lab, a Latin EDM label launched by Universal Music.[4] On 1 July 2016 Buraka Som sistema curated Globaile, a music event at the Torre de Belém grounds, as part of the Festas de Lisboa, where they performed their last concert.

Usage in media[edit]

Their song was featured in EA Sports video game such as "Kalemba (Wegue-Wegue)" featuring Pongolove in FIFA 10 and "Restless" in 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.[5] "Hangover (Ba Ba Ba)" is also featured in the video game Just Dance 2016.[6] Their song Bota also featured in a 2014 adidas advert featuring Dani Alves .


Studio albums[edit]

Year Album Chart positions Sales Certifications
(sales thresholds)
2006 From Buraka to the World
  • Originally released as an EP
  • Later re-released as a full album with extra tracks
  • POR:-
  • AFP: -
2008 Black Diamond
  • First full studio album
  • Released: November 2008
7 54
  • POR: 10,000+
  • WW:20,000+
  • AFP:Gold
2011 Komba
  • Second studio album
  • Released: November 2011
  • POR: -
  • WW:-
  • AFP:-
2014 Buraka
  • Third studio album
  • Released: September 2014


Year Title Chart Positions Album
2007 "Yah" - - - Black Diamond
"Wawaba (v. 1.8)" - - -
2008 "Sound of Kuduro" featuring DJ Znobia, M.I.A. - - -
"Kalemba (Wegue-Wegue)" 1 - 87
2009 "Aqui Para Vocês (feat. Deize Tigrona)" - - 91
2011 "Hangover (BaBaBa) " - - - Komba
"(We Stay) Up All Night" - - -


In the MTV Europe Music Awards 2007, they were 8th (out of 19) in the New Sounds of Europe International Competition and were one of the nominees for the Best Portuguese Act category. In the MTV Europe Music Awards 2008, the band won the Best Portuguese Act award.

MTV Europe Music Awards[edit]

The MTV Europe Music Awards is an annual awards ceremony established in 1994 by MTV Europe.

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2007 Buraka Som Sistema New Sounds of Europe Nominated
Buraka Som Sistema Best Portuguese Act Nominated
2008 Buraka Som Sistema Best Portuguese Act Won
2009 Buraka Som Sistema Best Portuguese Act Nominated

Golden Globes[edit]

The Golden Globes is an annual awards ceremony by Portuguese TV station SIC.

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2009 Buraka Som Sistema Group Of The Year Won

European Border Breakers Awards[edit]

The European Border Breakers Award is an annual awards ceremony for artists or groups who reached audiences outside their own countries with their first internationally released album in the past year.

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2009 Black Diamond European Border Breakers Award Won[7]

BEFFTA Awards[edit]

Buraka Som Sistema won the BEFFTA International Entertainment Icons award on 25 October 2014.[8] They told Sound And Motion magazine that they "were honoured to collect an award." [8]


  1. ^ "Blitz (Portuguese music magazine) online artist database". Blitz. Archived from the original on 2008-10-26. Retrieved 2009-01-26.
  2. ^ Conway, Eleanor (2008-11-21). "Eleanor Conway presents Buraka Som Sistema podcast". Virgin. Archived from the original on 2008-12-04. Retrieved 2009-04-23.
  3. ^ a b Lage, Joana (2007-05-02). "Buraka Som Sistema Interview". MyVillage.com. Archived from the original on 2009-10-16. Retrieved 2009-01-26.
  4. ^ Cobo, Leila (December 3, 2014). "Universal Launches New Latin EDM Label Aftercluv Dance Lab". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved August 7, 2015.
  5. ^ Birkby, M. (7 April 2010). "EA's 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa music soundtrack sets the stage for football glory". Electronic Arts. Retrieved 24 November 2019.
  6. ^ Makuch, Eddie (2015-09-26). "Every Song in Just Dance 2016". GameSpot. Retrieved 2018-08-30.
  7. ^ "European Border Breakers Awards 2010", Ec.europa.eu. Retrieved February 21, 2012
  8. ^ a b "Interview: Buraka Som Sistema | Sound and Motion". Archived from the original on 2014-10-29. Retrieved 2014-10-29.

External links[edit]