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Okayafrica DC for Black History Month!

Come to our African dance music party in DC hosted by DJ Underdog.


Okayafrica DC has delivered two spirit-filled ritualistic events since its inception. The party is consistently packed to capacity with dancers & music lovers and has gained recognition for bringing back the drum circle to U street. Its host DJ Underdog has previously curated shows with guest DJs like Sam Burns, Drew Cool, Native Sun, Collins and Kimozakii.

For our upcoming Okayafrica DC party the gate is open for spinners  i:WahClark, and Jahsonic to go deep into the roots of African music and house. Come dance in this ritual with DC's own Urban Artistry crew, setting off the party and invoking the spirit of community dancing ay Tropicalia, alongside live drummers from Farafina Kan. Witness the fitness of a party that's quickly becoming a mid-week detox for the nation's capital. Trust me, if you've been before then you know the drill! Love!

Anything is fair game over 120 BPM, but you'll probably hear some afrobeat, tribal house, kwaito, kuduro, South African house, zouk, soukous, jersey club, house remixes, disco & coupe decale. No pretensions, no playlists and no commercial radio nonsense allowed. Learn more about Okayafrica Wednesdays by following our Facebook and Twitter!

See the Okayafrica DC 4 Black History Month flyer and read about our special Instagram contest below!

At Okayafrica DC on the 13th, the "Black History Month Instagram Photo Challenge" theme is "Peace." @Yebies and @Okayafrica have decided to give away prizes for the most creative photos the represent the theme. Take a great photo in the DMV or a great photo the night of the event! The winner will ONLY be announced at the party. Only photos hashtagged with #BHM #YEBiesPC #OkayafricaDC will qualify. If you post pictures during the week leading up to the event or the night of the event, make sure to hashtag them properly. Some prizes will be from the OKAYAFRICA STORE.

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Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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