Bamboo 'Bibi Yangu'

Kenyan-American newcomer Bamboo drops a new track "Bibi Yangu," showcasing the rapper's ability to meld American and African hip-hop styles to great effect

Kenyan-American newcomer Bamboo has taken on the role of closing the gap between American and African hip-hop with his new track "Bibi Yangu" produced by K da Great and featuring a dope sample of Congolese rapper and producer Didjak Munya's track "Mukusa." What's even more interesting is that Bamboo raps in Swahili, despite it being his second language to English — a reversal of the more typical preferencing of the English language over native tongues in African hip-hop. After spending the early part of his childhood getting into trouble in the infamous Inglewood area of Cali, the rapper's parents sent him to live in Nairobi. It's precisely this mix of cultures and influences that inspire Bamboo to utilize the language and sounds of his parent country; as much as hip-hop's disciples in Africa are constantly willing to adopt American styles, the opposite is rarely true, leaving the cultural exchange between American hip -op and African hip-hop a bit lopsided. Bamboo wishes to redress this discrepancy not only by using Swahili in his rhymes, but also by infusing his sonic aesthetic with various styles of 1970s and 1980s African pop music as sampled reference points. Listen to "Bibi Yangu" below.

[H/T Fader]


Interview: Wavy The Creator Is Ready to See You Now

The multidisciplinary Nigerian-American artist on tapping into all her creative outlets, creating interesting things, releasing a new single and life during quarantine.

A trip canceled, plans interrupted, projects stalled. It is six months now since Wavy the Creator has had to make a stop at an undisclosed location to go into quarantine and get away from the eye of the pandemic.

The professional recording artist, photographer, writer, fashion artist, designer, and evolving creative has been spending all of this time in a house occupied by other creatives. This situation is ideal. At least for an artist like Wavy who is always in a rapid motion of creating and bringing interesting things to life. The energy around the house is robust enough to tap from and infuse into any of her numerous creative outlets. Sometimes, they also inspire trips into new creative territories. Most recently, for Wavy, are self-taught lessons on a bass guitar.

Wavy's days in this house are not without a pattern, of course. But some of the rituals and personal rules she drew up for herself, like many of us did for internal direction, at the beginning of the pandemic have been rewritten, adjusted, and sometimes ditched altogether. Some days start early and end late. Some find her at her sewing machine fixing up thrift clothes to fit her taste, a skill she picked up to earn extra cash while in college, others find her hard at work in the studio, writing or recording music.

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