The funny moniker of this Afro-pop/hip-hop outfit stands for its members: Sam, Mouzy (who eventually immigrated to Europe), Ousco and Donsky, four friends who grew up in Bamako, Mali, and bonded over their love of both African and American hip-hop. They formed a rap crew of their own in 1999 and made a name for themselves with several hit albums, music videos and performances throughout Africa, often with some of the continent's hottest MCs. But the four friends were always experimenting, particularly on the terrace at the home of Sam's parents, who just happen to be the internationally acclaimed blind Afro-pop stars of Mali, Amadou and Mariam. It was there, on the "magic terrace," that SMOD developed a new sound they called Afro-Rap, a hybrid style that blended African and American hip-hop, pop and folk. It was also there that they got to know Manu Chao, who began producing the group's work. In 2011, they released their self-titled American debut on Nacional Records.