Archives for posts with tag: Africa

The post is by Nigerian singer and composer Okwei Odili in collaboration with Goethe Institute Lagos and Insibidi Institute in honor of World Music Day 2017.

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Read here-

http://nsibidiinstitute.org/sound-is-powerful-and-unending/

PHOTO BY SILVIA LEMIE

 

 

Happy World Dance Day 2017!

In celebration of this day our guest is Nigeria’s Qudus Onikeku, one of Africa’s finest dancer and choreographer. Qudus is the founder of Qdance Academy in Lagos, and did us proud at this year’s  Biennale du Val de Marne in March.

Here’s his message on this day.

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Happy World Dance Day!

In the beginning wasn’t the word, in the beginning was MOVEMENT. The word was initially a thought in the mind of God, a moment within a sacred Dance in God’s mind, a moment of desire to create, to assemble and to recreate. It is within this “desire,” its metamorphoses, its sight, hearing, sense of smell, taste, touch – in short, its expressive power– that we mortals DANCE and CREATE.

In our beginning was MOVEMENT. A gush of sperm, a speed towards the ovum, and a continuous evolution which began, till it became blood, till it became a piece of meat, till it became a toad like creature, till it became a fetus, till it became a baby, till it became a child, till it became an adolescent and naive, till it became adult and restless, till it became old and experienced, till it became weary and frail, till it loses life, till it became dead, till it became corpse and degenerated, till it became worms, till it became insects and the MOVEMENT never cease to be.

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To connect with Qudus, peep his website

http://www.qudusonikeku.com/

Check out this excerpt of his piece “My exile is in my head”

Inspiring writer Bura Bari Nwilo is our guest today and it is a real pleasure.

Like the late African hero Ken Saro Wiwa, he hails from Ogoni land- a paradise in Nigeria turned to a bed of conflict centered on oil, and as you read on; Bura reveals to us from his Port-harcourt base what this means to him.

His contagious humor and satiric sense has earned him even more fans on social media, and frankly speaking he brings joy to many with his wise cracks, much needed in beautiful and chaotic Nigeria.

Here’s the cover of his new book, A Tiny Place Called Happiness.

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Now we invade the man in question, a little bit.

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AFRIKAJUMP- Welcome Bura and thank you for talking with us. I’m curious to know which African writers have influenced you the most, and how?

BURA- In terms of simple storytelling, Achebe would take the honour and of course it is basically by reading his works. In terms of experimenting and taking unconventional approaches, Dambudzo (Dambudzo Marechera) would be the man. I have read the House of Hunger and some of his works published posthumously. I love Ms Adichie too. She works magic with intricate sentences and details.

AFRIKAJUMP- Like the great late Ken Saro-Wiwa, you are from Ogoni land. How does the past and present history of your ancestral home affect you as a person and as a writer?

BURA- Currently, violence among the young people give me sleepless nights and sometimes I want to create fiction but the thought of my mother in the village give me worries. The despoliation of the land and our insistence on government to take responsibilities are factors that spur any creative person.

AFRIKAJUMP- And as a writer?

BURA- I always feel that writers have a way of representing their cultures in their works. Mine is under-represented. See what Junot Diaz does with Dominican Republic. The fine memories I have of Ogoni and the people, of love and late night play in the sand, if I don’t capture them fictionally, I doubt if anyone would.

Ken Saro-Wiwa is a pathfinder when it comes to stories from this part of the world and I appreciate his styles and courage to tell it.

AFRIKAJUMP- If you were appointed by government as part of a team to support Literary Arts in Nigeria what top 3 remedies would you prescribe?

BURA BARI- We would give adequate support to indigenous publishing houses and create reading centres across the country. This would help to reunite book readers again. When you visit some of the libraries, either the rooms meant for literary discussions have been turned into shops or made into stores. We will bring it back. We’d set up reading contests so that young people would know that reading is cool too.

AFRIKAJUMP- You have a funny bone. Your book; Diary of a bloody retard is proof; and there’s that letter you wrote to Nigerian pop star Dbanj some years ago. Of course we cannot exclude your social media updates. Many Nigerians use humor as a survival mechanism. Is this your case too? Are you going to take your comic to perhaps the movies, and more?

BURA- Yeah. It is in my book on relationship – Diary of a Stupid Boyfriend and of course the recent book of short stories – A Tiny Place Called Happiness. Humor is one way to survive around here. It could be too dark and to see the lighter side of the things around here keeps life in us.

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 AFRIKAJUMP- Any past, present or future project(s) you want us to know about?

BURA- I am still promoting A Tiny Place Called Happiness. I may be working on a book of stories for young children. I have been researching that for a while. It is still developing. And yes, I am looking at going back to school, get a degree in African Studies and write some more.

AFRIKAJUMP- Can you try to describe your city in one word? Okay two words max.

BURA- Chaotically beautiful.

 

CONNECT MORE WITH HIM HERE

www.themetroreview.com

rottenbiro.blogspot.com

We are currently feeling this new jam from Zimbabwean Rapper/MC Gerald Mugwenhi, alias Synik.

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The track ‘Dream about you’ isn’t a solo effort, Synik teams up with his new crew Jazza Experiment with musicians Jazzafari and Lana Gasparotti. They are based in Lisbon, Portugal. The union  is a perfect fit with Synik’s history as a conscious rapper who talks about Zimbabwean and global issues, through a combination of sounds from his culture like Mbira, with western influences.

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After blessing us with releases like The Beta Version EP, The God Within Single as well as the ground-breaking Zimbabwean Hip-Hop album Syn City, hailed as one of the more accomplished Hip-Hop projects to come out of Zimbabwe in recent years and winning him 3 awards in the 2012 edition of Zimbabwe Hip-Hop awards, we are delighted with his new musical direction.

Jazza experiment is all about that eclectic sound that the group defines as Space-Jazz Offbeat.

For your health and well-being we recommend a thorough listening. The track is smooth and heavy and also features talented teenage saxophonist Bernardo Tinoco. Congrats guys.

 Watch Jazza Experiment Dream About You here

 Connect with the group here

www.facebook.com/jazzaexperiment

https://jazzaexperiment.bandcamp.com/

www.instagram.com/jazzaexperiment

 www.instagram.com/synikzim

 

 

In this present day Africa where most things that are our trademark historically, economically, socially and culturally are getting eroded, it is refreshing to see people, especially young people that insist on being Africans- acknowledging the continents richness in spirituality, culture and other ways that pay homage to their rich roots.

Based in Eastern Nigeria, Precious Amarachi-Ugo a cultural enthusiast and explorer seeks to remind Africans of who we were, and what we can be. Her mission reads like the Ghanaian phrase SANKOFA which is a call for us to return to our roots. Amarachi-Ugo believes this is the path through which Africa and indeed Africans can be free again, in body, mind and spirit. We do too, and also love her love for mystery.

AFRIKAJUMP asked her questions about her life and great mission.
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AFRIKAJUMP-Thanks so much for giving some of your precious time, Precious. It is a real pleasure. Can you tell us when you realized your love for travel and exploring?

PRECIOUS-I realized the love for traveling at a very tender age. Mostly from my dad, I grew up with my dad; always traveling during the weekends, going to the borders of Benin and Nigeria to buy shoes that he sold in different places like the Ministry of works and sorts. They said I took after my dad in everything because as young as 10/11 years old, my parents were comfortable putting me in a bus whenever I’m going for a holiday and giving the driver a number to call when we alight. They knew I enjoyed it and I was smart enough to be safe.

AFRIKAJUMP-Yes we don’t need a soothsayer to make us see your bravery. Congrats. What does culture mean to you?

PRECIOUS-Culture is everything to me and also I will say I’m just an old soul. It became my own way of life, even when I barely knew what I was doing I’ve always been attracted to culture. I came from a poor staunch Christian home so anything with any cultural attributes was always frowned at and automatically labeled evil-one of the disadvantages we suffer from religion/colonization. To me however culture will always be that way of living; the way our ancestors lived, the way they flourished just with exactly what we have around us.

AFRIKAJUMP-Preach sister.  Tell us about your project Myafurika please.

PRECIOUS-Myafurika is a huge project that is going to affect almost every aspect of reawakening in Africa as a whole. Myafurika focuses on showcasing the beauty and wonders of Africa. We travel to those places in Africa with historical heritages, rich in traditions and nature. Places that hold histories of Africa that most Africans don’t know ever happened. We go there, get pictures, videos then write about them for the world to see that Africa is not about dark people living in the dark; to show the world that Africa is beyond beautiful and to assure and teach our people that we can be greater and dependent by ourselves. We will also be introducing fashion very soon that we will make possible with our hand woven materials of course made here from start to finish.

AFRIKAJUMP-Sounds great, Good luck. What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve encountered on your adventures?

PRECIOUS-Finance. It has been a very big issue because most people that would have been able to finance are dragging back because they don’t agree with our stance, saying it’s against their religion. Some don’t just see the importance of the reawakening because they are comfortable in not knowing and don’t want to know.
Then there is the issue of bad roads. We do most of our traveling by road and most of our roads are death traps thus making some trips fearful ones.

AFRIKAJUMP-Many Nigerians your age mostly practice religions that were imposed on Africans but you hold your ancestral beliefs close to your heart. What is the motivation?

PRECIOUS-Like I said before,I’m an old soul,its within me. Even with the fact of being born into  a staunch Christian home,religion never made sense to me. My grandmother played a big part in motivating me, around the short period I stayed with her,in the evenings when we sit in the veranda, and I ask her questions about religion she always ended up with a line I never forget. She will say to me ‘My dear daughter, always keep your heart clean and pure and always , have good intentions towards your fellow humans cause in anybody religion is within themselves’.

AFRIKAJUMP- Wise words. What do you propose to encourage religious tolerance in Nigeria, particularly those of our native belief systems?

PRECIOUS-Whenever the discussions on that tolerance is raised, I always use the saying “Live and let live” we live in a country that supports freedom of religion and that wasn’t categorized on some and some are left. So if some religion or Christians and/or Muslims are against native believers,what makes them different from what they preach about which is “Love”? So I think individuals should learn to understand that people’s way of worship doesn’t change anything from who they are, before any religion we were first of all  Humans. And no amount of religion is going change that.

AFRIKAJUMP- Preach. What is your dream destination?

PRECIOUS-South Africa,Greece

AFRIKAJUMP-Can you describe your city in one word?

PRECIOUS-Beautiful
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CHECK PRECIOUS’ WEBSITE HERE

http://myafurika.com/

FACEBOOK https://www.facebook.com/MyAfurika/

 

AFRIKAJUMP had the real pleasure of sitting down with Nigerian rapper Teria Yarhere, more popularly known as M-Trill Teria. M-Trill has trilled audiences with hit songs that won him fans and awards until he changed directions to pursue other creative paths. He is back on the scene with his new musical work- ABOH. This word in Teria’s language from Delta state means CLAP.

M-trill talks about stuff he did while away from music, and more.

Further below is the premiere of the track and video on this page.

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AFRIKAJUMP M-trill, how does it feel to be back on the scene with your new work, Aboh?

M-TRILL I think relieved is the right word. I feel relieved to be back, music doesn’t allow you a life if you do not answer it. Every song is a reminder of what you can do, so I’m happy to be making and putting out music again.

AFRIKAJUMP What were some of the lessons you learned from your recent past time of absence from mainstream music?

M-TRILL Quite a number, more business lessons though because I started a media support company. I learnt a lot about customer service. Your client’s troubles automatically become yours. I was waking up at 4am to respond to client needs. I loved the experience. I learnt how to better manage people, I learnt more about myself and what drives me. I think what I learnt the most was balance. The art of walking the thin line and catering to all needs at the same time.

AFRIKAJUMP Congrats M-trill. Can you tell us a bit about your new song Aboh, and what inspired it?

M-TRILL Aboh was partly inspired by my very first single “Bounce” off my first album. I began that song with a phrase “where my clap at”…turned out to be very effective for performances as it was the ice breaker between the crowd and myself. I also always liked the way the churches in Warri clap and praise. The claps alone are melodious so I wanted to try and infuse all that into this song.

AFRIKAJUMP Clearly it’s working for you. Welldone. Is this single part of a coming album?

M-TRILL Yes, the album locally made should drop this year by God’s grace. There’s a lot of music I want to free myself off. So, yes we will be dropping the album this year.

AFRIKAJUMP The influence of your culture is evident in your new video. What does culture mean to you?

M-TRILL For me, it’s the balance. I really don’t rap in pidgin or any of the local languages so infusing our culture in the beats and visuals is my way of balancing it for my target audience. I needed to find a way to let people know where I am from and I didn’t want any misconceptions.

AFRIKAJUMP If you had the power to change three things in Nigeria’s music industry for good, what would they be?

M-TRILL Royalties. I would change the ways royalties are collected so more artistes can live off their art. 2. Better media platforms for performing arts…so more TV and radio shows that go beyond playing music videos and more music related content, educative and entertaining content. 3. Celebrate the diversity in music, most of the songs in the industry sound the same and that’s because we do not celebrate the diverse talents that abound, I would like to change that.

AFRIKAJUMP Thanks bro. Lastly, can you describe your city in just one word?

M-TRILL Port Harcourt is my city and that’s Home. PH is home to me.

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WATCH “ABOH ON YOUTUBE 

 

LISTEN TO “ABOH” ON SOUNDCLOUD: https://soundcloud.com/user-34074749/mtrillaboh

CONNECT WITH THE ARTIST

Twitter- @Mtrillteria

Instagram – @Mtrillteria

facebook – @mtrillteria

AFRIKAJUMP took a trip on February 17 to a spiritual place, Terreiro do Capivari. We found it magical too.

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This large expanse of land in Bahia Brazil is a testament to history, Africa and the inspiring resilience of Afro-Brazilians. Nature lives and thrives here as evidenced by its luscious vegetation.  Its natural ambiance is a huge part of  Terreiro do Capivari’s history. In Brazil a terreiro is where the Afro-Brazilian religion called Candomblé is practiced. This religion with roots from Nigeria and Benin Republic was spread in countries like Brazil, Cuba, Haiti, America and some other nations by Africans who were stolen through slavery.

The most striking visual here in Terreiro do Capivari has to be a proud Iroko tree dedicated to Obaluaiye-lord of the earth, and Osumare– the Rainbow god. The magnificent tree with delicious fruits dates over 200 years.

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Another remarkable thing is this tree lives right in the house with the inhabitants who made an altar of it. It has being a home of refuge and prayer for so many decades.

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In the story narrated by the gracious Babalorisa and Iyalorisa who received us warmly, the location was lived in by a Brazilian slave owner who as expected bought a stolen African; an ancestor of this present Babalorisa. As time went on, freedom came for the enslaved in Brazil, but Baba’s ancestor continued to live there while he weighed his options.

Then there came a major outbreak of cholera which killed many. Baba’s ancestral family was affected but they did not die because their father knew what herbs to get from the bush to tackle the disease. Eventually the disease spread to the slave owner’s family, the lady of the house panicked and asked Baba for help. Baba’s kindness and his plants saved them, and in gratitude she asked him to choose a large portion of the land for himself. He erected his altar and the rest is history.

There is a house of Baba Egun, altars of Ogun, Sango, and a sweet running stream, a sign of Osun.

There are many relics from many decades past like this box used to transport materials, drums fashioned directly from a tree, this grinding stone, which was stolen but recovered by Brazilian authorities in far away Sao Paulo! Sigh. Some people are just…No words.

Reverence to our good ancestors is a huge part of Africa’s belief systems, and in this terreiro, ancestors who set the path are fondly remembered.

Today the land is home to many medicinal plants- some rare, trees and unending music from birds.

AFRIKAJUMP is grateful to Babalorisa and Iyalorisa who welcomed us with open arms and minds.

There are plans for an exposition here in the near future. To know more, here’s their facebook

https://www.facebook.com/Terreiro-do-Capivari-Casa-de-Obaluay%C3%AA-e-Oxumar%C3%AA-285103178325540/

Ase.