AFRICA IS A COUNTRY

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Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

Goma Rap: The 9th annual Salaam Kivu International Film Festival

When the M23 militia took control of Goma, the capital of North Kivu in Eastern Congo, in late 2012, the premises of Yole Africa were quickly occupied by a large crowd of youngsters. Some of them were looking for refuge after their homes had been bombed; some others were there to make sure that the

Friday, June 20th, 2014

Discovering Prophets Of Da City

One late afternoon while milling about at the University of Cape Town’s main campus, I ran into Adam Haupt, the Associate Professor of Media Studies who’s authored books such as Static: Race and Representation in Post-Apartheid Music, Media...

Tuesday, May 6th, 2014

20 Years of Freedom in South Africa: What do hip hop heads in Cape Town make of elections

Having been hosted by the likes of DJ Ready D, Big Dre, Shameen, and Wanda, just to mention a few, Headwarmaz is now in the hands of the new generation of Cape Town hip hop in the...

Friday, November 1st, 2013

Boogie Down Nima in the Bronx

For almost two decades now, the Bronx has been the focus of much of New York’s newest wave of Africans moving to the United States. Films such as Little Senegal, Bronx Princess, and Prince of Broadway, have...

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Rapping Against Impunity

Senegal’s rapper-activists recently collaborated on a new single in support of Amnesty International’s campaign against impunity in the country. The human rights advocacy organization launched the campaign to draw attention to the fact that there has been...

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

Rap Comes Home

It’s quite a weekend for New York’s prodigal child. Hip-Hop, that burst of youthful energy that was put out into the universe 30 plus years ago is coming back home from several places at once. It’s arriving at...

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Dama do Bling, Mozambique’s Queen of Hip-Hop

“A young person with a university degree can’t sing, but a minister with a 6th grade education can legislate?,” Dama do Bling sang in her 2007 song “Sai,” a musical response to inquiries why, in spite of...

Friday, February 1st, 2013

Yes, we’re discussing Danny Brown’s “Black Brad Pitt” music video

So Detroit rapper, Danny Brown (remember his breakout mixtape “XXX,” his video for “Grown Up” and a darling of music blogs) has new video for his song, “Black Brad Pitt.”  The first things that strike any viewer of...

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

Lesotho Hip-Hop: The New Breed

I am based in-between Maseru, Lesotho and Cape Town, South Africa throughout the year. Recently, when in Lesotho, I decided to see how far the Hip-Hop scene had progressed, seeing that I have been involved directly in...

Monday, November 5th, 2012

80% of Angolans alive today have only ever called one man President

Eighty percent of Angolans today have only ever called one man President. Sure, some have had other allegiances; there was a serious armed opposition and there were 27 years of civil war, but José Eduardo dos Santos...

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

‘Syn City’ Harare

Zimbabwe is a paradox. A country riddled with contradictions. While the often unpalatable and sometimes hair-raising stories are making news, the stories of everyday people of Zimbabwe are less reported, if not altogether the country’s best kept...

Friday, October 12th, 2012

Soukous for Francophonie (and for Kabila)

Big concert this week, October 10, in Kinshasa to honor the 2012 Francophonie summit. Performances by Papa Wemba and Werrason with their groups have already been posted online. Also on the program were Mbilia Bel, Tshala Muana,...

Friday, September 14th, 2012

Big Frizzle’s ‘Africa’

This music video for Big Frizzle’s ‘All Black Everything’, produced by London-based media house GlobalFaction made me wonder about GlobalFaction’s politics, and their use of imagery. I’m struck by the flood of historical images featuring in recent...

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Is Hip-Hop artist Ismael Sankara related to Thomas Sankara? Does it matter?

There are many things in life that really don’t matter all that much, but are very intriguing. The line between a person’s privacy and how to inappropriately disturb it by sticking one’s nose where it’s not invited...

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

In North Kivu, R&B is pure art

The text that comes with Agata Pietron’s photographs of youth in Kiwanja and Rutshuru (North Kivu, Congo) flirts with the clichés (the Conrad reference; the brave missionaries; the photographer is a “muzungu” who “discovers” youth who are...

Friday, June 1st, 2012

Friday Music Break, N°12

I’m taking over the Friday music break this week. First up, the prolific Azonto producer E.L. surprises us this week with a 25 track debut album. He had so many songs stored up he decided to release...

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

The BET Awards do Africa

Last year, BET introduced a category into their annual awards show called “Best International Act: Africa.” I wasn’t that surprised. We’ve been heading down the road towards a mainstream acknowledgement of #InternationalBlack-ness for a while. I chalk it...

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Africanos Latinos

Latin America and the Caribbean haven’t gotten enough attention on this site. We’re going to intentionally rectify that, and I’m excited to start by sharing this video from sometimes collaborators of mine, Los Rakas.

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Parisian Africa: The artistic intersections of the Métropole

Guest Post by Lara N. Dotson-Renta Paris has always been renowned for its culture and support of the arts. Yet, as France has grown into an ever more pluralistic society, the traditional image of what constitutes art...

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

My favorite photographs N°2: Scott Williams

South African photographer Scott Williams is the second guest in our new weekly series. He has, he says, masqueraded as a freelance photographer during his lunchtimes and after-hours for some eight years. “I love to document the...

Monday, March 12th, 2012

Now Soulja Boy takes on Joseph Kony

It has come to this. Musicians, especially rappers, had to wade in. Like everyone else who is now an expert on Uganda, they were quick to declare themselves on board with #Kony2012.* But some have taken it...

Saturday, March 10th, 2012

Music Break. Khuli Chana

The video for South African hip hop head Khuli Chana’s ‘Tswa Daar’ comes with a nod to Craig Mack’s Get Down. Have we already said DJ Raiko’s beats (and writing) are underrated?

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Paris is a Continent N°8

Loads of Paris suburbs gets shouted out in this song by a cast of the city's rappers.

Monday, January 30th, 2012

The Nordic Connection

New music from Finland and Sweden.

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

Mixtapes and Megaupload

I was going to post the link to Das Racist's latest offering, a funny, irreverent and poignant mixtape by Heems AKA Himanshi Suri, unofficial leader of the NYC rap group, but the FBI has just...

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Busted Rhymes

Gebaste Rhymes sent us a link to his single ‘Kaap issie Bom’ , the first single off One Day Vol. 1. The full album (or audio hip-hopumentary) will be out later in 2012...

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Congo Votes

Over the past week, it was hard to find an article published in a major international press outlet not looking at the build-up to today’s presidential elections through the lens of fear and/of violence. With the exception...

Friday, November 4th, 2011

‘Suit Up’

Nice video (Tiro Rose) and photographs (Ference Isaacs) of hip hop dancers from all over Cape Town, South Africa.

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

Music Break / Sylvester & Ssavoo

The video for Kampala rappers Sylvester & Ssavoo’s “Akaseera” comes with a laid back groove. I am still celebrating Ugandan independence. Via Silkamb.

Friday, October 7th, 2011

Amber Rose went to Ghana

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