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Here's What You Need to Know About Africa Day 2020.

What You Need to Know About Africa Day 2020

We've got you covered on the details of this year's Africa Day.

The 57th anniversary of Africa Day is coming up next week. While the day is celebrated across the continent, it is however observed as an official national holiday in Ghana, The Gambia, Guinea, Namibia, Zambia, Mali, Mauritania, Lesotho and Zimbabwe. Commemorated on May 25th, Africa Day was established after the leaders of the 32 independent African states signed a founding charter in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia back in 1963.


OkayAfrica's Damola Durosomo writes: "The origins of the holiday can be traced back to 1958 when 17 African nations established African Liberation Day, to commemorate their independence from European colonialism. Africa Day came about after 32 independent nations—led by Tanzania's Julius Nyerere, Ghana's Kwame Nkrumah, Guinea's Sékou Touré and Zambia's Kenneth Kaunda—formed the Organization of African Unity (OAU) May 1963 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Since then, 21 more nations have joined, and in 2001, the OAU became what is now known as the African Union (AU)."

Each year, Africa Day has a specific theme which sets the tone for any upcoming events, activist movements, celebrations and earnest reflection on the part of all Africans. Last year's theme "Healthy Lifestyle Prolongs Life" focused on highlighting the benefits of a healthy lifestyle while the theme in 2018 was "The Year of Nelson Mandela–Building a Better Africa and a Better World".

This year's theme however, has not been clarified as yet.

Given the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, most celebrations for Africa Day will be virtual owing to social distancing measures and national lockdowns which have been enforced in numerous African countries.

Perhaps one of the biggest events set to take place is the Africa Day Benefit Concert At Home, which will be hosted byIdris Elba. The concert, which will feature artists such as Angelique Kidjo, Burna Boy, AKA and many others, is set to be streamed on MTV Base platforms with the aim of raising funds to help in the continued fight against COVID-19 in Africa. Read more about it here.

News Brief
Photo: Ayra Starr/Orienteer.

Ayra Starr & Kelly Rowland Connect For Ultra Sultry "Bloody Samaritan" Remix

"I've always been a huge fan of Kelly Rowland, and when this came up, I could barely keep in the excitement," mentions the young Mavin Records star.


Ayra Starr has joined creative forces with Kelly Rowland to create a remix of her "Bloody Samaritan" record. The Mavin Records artist has been putting effort into her craft, and her recent collaboration with Rowland is an indication of her growing musical prowess.

Connecting with Rowland, who is a music icon, is another step in the right direction for the young Afro-pop star. The initial release of "Bloody Samaritan" was a well-received record that amassed over 60 million TikTok views and was also featured on BBC Radio's 1Xtra—the remix is equally as enjoyable. Although it retains the sound of the original song, it has its unique ambiance, which fuses elements of Afrobeats, Afro-pop and smooth R&B.

Starr continues to rise in the global music scene and her recent collaboration with Spotify has the potential to skyrocket the musical influence of the newcomer globally. Artists like Starr are increasingly pushing the envelope as it relates to collaborating with bigger names in the music world, which was something that was not as rampant a few years ago. While discussing the collaboration, Starr shared her excitement about the record and her admiration for Rowland.

"I've always been a huge fan of Kelly Rowland, and when this came up, I could barely keep in the excitement! While recording this, Kelly made me feel so comfortable and relaxed, something I really appreciate," said Starr. "She was super amazing! and I was able to hold my own alongside a legend, and I can't wait to share this new music with you all!"

Although Ayra Starr is one of the youngest artists in the Afro-pop world, she has already been making a solid impression among fans and music analysts. In an NME piece, the publication described Starr as “the teen leading her generation’s sonic revolution.” Her stage presence, confidence, and overall "je ne sais quoi" essence have proven that the Gen-Z pioneer is ready to continue to put her name and genre on the map.

Listen to Ayra Starr and Kelly Rowland's "Bloody Samaritan" remix below!

Music
Photo courtesy of the artist.

The 10 Best South African Songs of the Month (September)

Featuring AKA, Nasty C, K.O, Blaq Diamond, Musa Keys, and more.

Here are the South African songs and music videos that caught our attention this month.

Check out more of our Best Songs of the Month lists from Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa and East Africa. You can also follow our weeklySongs You Need to Hear roundup for the best new music.

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The 8 Best Ghanaian Songs of the Month (September)

Featuring Black Sherif, R2Bees x Gyakie, Kelvyn Boy, KiDi, Sarkodie x King Promise, Wendy Shay and more.

We’re back again with all the heat from Ghana! September has been an eventful month in the world of music, as your favorite artists are gearing up to close out the year with some solid tunes. From Stonebwoy to Black Sherif to R2Bees and more, there’s plenty of brand new tunes to grace your playlists. Check out our picks of the best Ghanaian songs of the month below.

Check out more of our Best Songs of the Month lists from Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa and East Africa. You can also follow our weeklySongs You Need to Hear roundup for the best new music.

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Arts + Culture
Photo: Kugali

Kugali's CEO On Making Animation History with Disney

With its upcoming series, Iwájú, the media company is at the forefront of African animation's global breakthrough, but it doesn't want viewers on the continent to get left behind.

“We have been working on this for a couple of years so there’s a relief in seeing something you have nurtured get to this point,” Kugali’s new CEO Danson Njoka tells OkayAfrica. Over a Zoom call, while working from his London apartment, Njoka speaks fondly about Iwájú, the sci-fi animated series created with Disney that will finally reach audiences next year. At the D23 Expo earlier this month in California, a first look at the series was unveiled, as part of the studio’s upcoming content slate, making it all the more real.

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Watch Ayra Starr's Spirited Music Video For "Rush"

The Mavin Records powerhouse releases an eye-catching music video for her up-tempo single "Rush."