Audio

AFRICA IN YOUR EARBUDS #17: AWESOME TAPES FROM AFRICA

Download a pan-continental vintage Africa In Your Earbuds mixtape from Awesome Tapes From Africa.


Awesome Tapes From Africa, the brainchild blog-come-record label of Brian Shimkovitz,  gathers hard-to-find cassettes from the continent. ATFA selections regularly span vintage mbalax, juju, bongo flava, and disco-electro cuts, amongst many others, which are then presented on the site as free downloads.

For Africa In Your Earbuds #17, Awesome Tapes compiles a pan-continental, analog tape mix of tunes from his vast collection, including songs by the first two ATFA record label artists, — Malian singer Nâ Hawa Doumbia and North Ghana's kologo player Bola. Speaking on his mix, Brian writes:

I wanted put together a selection of songs that I have been into lately for the Okayafrica community. Since you guys are into all different kinds of sounds I tried to include songs from all over, spanning a few decades. I have been playing a lot of tapes live and it's left some of the more relaxed recordings get a bit dusty. So I am keeping it kind of chill here until the more dancefloor-ready tracks toward the second half.

Head to Awesome Tapes to buy the official releases and browse the collection. Plus lookout for ATFA spinning live (tour dates below).

Stream and grab Africa In Your Earbuds #17: Awesome Tapes From Africa below! As always, a big up to Underdog for the cover art.

Okayafrica x Awesome Tapes From Africa Mix

1. Ephrem Tamru "Ney Ney" Ethiopia

2. Nâ Hawa Doumbia "Dan Te Dinye La" Mali

3. Zagazougou "Zagadon" Ivory Coast

4. Issa Coulibaly "Lodjourato" Mali

5. Ahwach Souse Title Unknown (Side A excerpt) Morocco

7. Jagwa Music "Liwalo Na Liwe" Tanzania

8. Ndiogou Seck "Xoox-yi" Senegal

9. Issa Bagayogo "Lanaya" Mali

10. Foster Manganyi "Ndzi To Tiyisela" South Africa

11. Bola "Tivona Vonbubo" Ghana

ATFA Live Dates

05.18 New York NY / Santos Partyhouse

05.19 Brooklyn NY / 285 Kent w/ Lamin Fofana

05.20 New York NY / Lisa Cooley Gallery

05.23 Boston MA / Spectacle

05.25 Seattle, WA / CAIRO

05.26 Portland OR / Holocene

05.28 George, WA / Sasquatch! Music Festival at the Gorge

Previously on Africa In Your Earbuds: PETITE NOIROLUGBENGA, RICH MEDINA, VOICES OF BLACK, LAMIN FOFANA, CHICO MANNDJ UNDERDOGDJ OBAHSABINEBROTHA ONACIDJ AQBTJUST A BANDSTIMULUSQOOL DJ MARVSINKANECHIEF BOIMA.

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

Adekunle Gold Is Living His Best Life

We speak to the Nigerian star about how marriage and fatherhood have led him to find both newfound happiness and newfound freedom as an artist.