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A Tuareg Remake Of 'Purple Rain' Starring Mdou Moctar

'Akounak' is Christopher Kirkley's feature film set in Niger, focusing on the Tuareg guitar scene in Agadez.


Sahel Sound's Christopher Kirkley and Jerome Fino (of L'improbable collective) have come together to create Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai  a feature film set in Niger exploring the Tuareg guitar scene in Agadez. The film originally came about as Chris and Jerome joked about creating a Tuareg remake of Prince's cult classic Purple Rain. With filming set to resume in February and renowned Tuareg guitarist and Northern African cellphone music star Mdou Moctar cast in the lead as a guitarist struggling to make it in the face of fierce competition and the trials and tribulations of daily life, the original joke has become a promising reality.

Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai, which translates roughly as 'Rain the Color of Blue with a little Red in it,' will mark the first time a film is shot entirely in the Tuareg language. Shot in Agadez (also home to site favorite Bombino) using a local crew, Akounak is aimed specifically at a Tuareg audience. In addition to its sharp look, the "stylized fictional tale," an homage to both Purple Rain and The Harder They Come, also promises to spark welcomed debate in the face of the ban on music in northern Mali — a move which threatened to cripple a fundamental aspect of Tuareg culture. The film comes out in June 2014, presumably as an online release though we're not sure on the details yet. In the meantime, check out the trailer below and find out more about the film and its kickstarter project.

Interview
Stella Mwangi. Image courtesy of the artist.

Stella Mwangi: Hip-Hop Saved My Life as an African Growing Up in Norway

The Kenyan-Norwegian rapper speaks about the Hollywood hustle, the potential of East African music and what she's dropping next.

If it seems like Stella Mwangi is everywhere these days, that's understandable. It's nearly impossible to see all the rings she's throwing her hat into: her songs are getting featured in Hollywood and across commercials, films and movie trailers.

There's a reason why it's possible to stay on such a grind, to make it work after more than a decade in the rap game, and that's an underlying theme with much of what the Kenyan-Norwegian artist, who also goes by STL, does. She's charged with an incomprehensible current that would have burned out other artists. Even as I caught up with her, she was hours away from taking a flight to the filming of a reality cooking competitions in Norway.

So what is on deck for Stella Mwangi? As it turns out, seemingly everything.

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News

This South African DJ Is Creating a List of Toxic Men in the Industry She Won't Work With

DJ ANG is taking a stand against sexual harassment in the music industry by calling out toxic artists.

August is Women's Month in South Africa, and women around the country are using the opportunity to stand up against femicide, gender violence and sexual harassment on a national level.

There are many ways to protest, and South African DJ and head of SheSaidSo South Africa, Angela Weickl, also known as ANG is carrying out her own demonstration against sexual harassment in the music industry by calling toxic artists out by name and refusing to work alongside them.

"I will be including a list in every booking agreement from now onwards," the artist wrote on Facebook. "This list will be of artists who I refuse to be on a line up with due to their toxic and harmful behaviour. I will not share the spaces where we work to promote diversity, inclusion and safety, with people who harm and disrespect us. If a venue or promoter cannot understand my choice, then I choose not to associate with them."

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popular

Watch the Trailer for 'La Negrada'—Mexico's First Feature Film with an All-Black Cast

The beautifully-shot film snagged the cinematography award at the 2018 Guadalajara International Film Festival.

This August, OkayAfrica shines a light on the connections between Africa and the Latin-American world. Whether it's the music, politics or intellectual traditions, Africans have long been at the forefront of Latino culture, but they haven't always gotten the recognition. We explore the history of Afro-Latino identity and its connection to the motherland.

This new film that recently premiered in Mexico City has made history in the Latin American film world.

La Negrada, directed by Jorge Pérez Solano, is Mexico's first fiction film portraying the Afro-Mexican population, REMEZCLA reports.

Contributing to the slow, but long overdue recognition of Afro-Latino communities on the big screen, La Negrada tells the story of two women, Juana and Magdalena, who are both romantically involved with the same man, Neri. The film was shot throughout Costa Chica—a region that spans along the coast of Guerrero and Oaxaca that's home to the highest concentration of Afro-descendants in Mexico—as Solano enlisted locals and non-professional actors to star in the film.

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