AFRICA IS A COUNTRY

Shabazz Palaces

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Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

Tendai Maraire: “Boom is me throwing a punch at those that still disrespect Zimbabwean music”

When Tendai Maraire broke down his Pungwe mixtape for us last year. I remember when Zimbabwe gained independence. My mother had a big party at the house in Seattle — with all her friends, Zimbabwean and American. My uncle, who fought in the guerrilla war against the white Rhodesian state, flew in weeks later. She started celebrating

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Tendai Maraire (of Shabazz Palaces) breaks down new mixtape

“This is an African Hip-Hop movement.” Seattle-based Zimbabwean Tendai Maraire aka Fly guy Dai (one half of Shabazz Palaces duo) sounds adamant. And he has the digital mixtape to prove it. On ‘Pungwe’, Maraire “not so much brings...

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

The Indelible Mark of the Mbira

The multi-named thumb piano is quite an important foundational instrument for contemporary music all over the world, although it’s perhaps not always recognized as such. In Congo, colonial era missionaries banned the instrument from their services, saying...

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Yasiin Bey plays a mbira …

This was done for GQ Magazine. He also raps half-heartedly. I suppose, we should be “tril(led).” He should’ve asked Shabazz Palaces* about what you can do with a mbira:

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

Friday Music Bonus Edition

This week saw the passing of Don Cornelius. You’ll remember Letta Mbulu was once a guest on his Soul Train. I wondered what a Soul Train show set to an afrobeat would have looked like. YouTube helped:...

Friday, December 2nd, 2011

Music Break. Friday Bonus Edition, N°3

tUnE-yArDs cite Barrington Levy, Odetta, Woody Guthrie, Eleanor Roosevelt, Charlie Chaplin, Ruth Garbus, Bertolt Brecht, Björk, Todd Rundgren, Fela Kuti and “you” as their influences. Here they perform live at a public radio station in New York...

Tuesday, September 20th, 2011

Music Break / Shabazz Palaces

I’m looking forward to hearing Shabazz Palaces play during their European tour later this month. It seems like the live renditions of the new songs don’t quite sound like the Black Up album versions. Via Gorilla vs....

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Shabazz Palaces and Kahlil Joseph

Although the effect of blending the music by Shabazz Palaces and the images of documentary-in-the-making Tough Bond escapes me, for now, I am looking forward to seeing the end results (both of the documentary and the Shabazz...