Songs for the Atlas Lions of Morocco (or Afcon 2013 Playlist Playlist N°5)

Despite high hopes, Morocco’s Atlas Lions crashed out of Afcon 2013, but that didn’t prevent young Moroccans from bumpin’ and groovin’ to radio pop. First up is the internationally renowned and veteran Algerian crooner, Khaled, known for hits like “Aicha” and “Didi.” In late 2012, Khlaed released a new album with a new single, “Hiya Hiya,” which features American rapper/songwriter Pit Bull.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fyG0DQWD-80

Then’s there’s Rihanna’s “Diamonds.” We sure hoped that our national team would “shine bright like a diamond” at this year’s Afcon tournament. Rihanna’s melancholic song reflects our dashed hopes of football glory. Alas, maybe at next year’s World Cup we’ll be more successful (yeah right).

“Tombée pour elle” (fell for her), is an R&B song by Booba, a Half Senegalese and half French artist who has been rapping since the mid-1990s.

Yes, Britney Spears & Will.i.am’s “Scream and Shout.” Despite her mental meltdown a few years ago, Moroccan music fans have not given up on Britney. Teaming up with Will.I.Am (from the Black Eyed Peas), this Gangnam Style-like hit is ruling Morocco’s airwaves and club scene.

Moroccan rap artist, Fnaire (and Soprano, featured on the song), hails from the city of Marrakessh. Together they perform what they coin as “traditional rap”. They mix tradition music (like Chaabi music) with hip hop, and infusing it with lyrics about social and political issues that resonate among Moroccan youth.

* Youssef Benlamhih blogs and tweets about international affairs.

Further Reading

Music is the weapon

During Christmas 1980, Hugh Masekela and Miriam Makeba performed at a concert in Lesotho that deeply challenged and disturbed South Africa’s apartheid regime. The record of that concert is being reissued.

Carceral colonialism

On the United Kingdom’s attempts to finance the construction of large-scale prison facilities in former colonies, to where it wants to deport undocumented migrants.

Fanon’s mission

The works of Frantz Fanon can be read as architectural renderings of rights, futures, and generations toward a “very different Afro-futurism.”

History time

The historical novel is in vogue across the continent, challenging how we conceive of the nation, and how we write its histories.