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AFRICA IN YOUR EARBUDS #38: YOUNG FATHERS

Download an African In Your Earbuds mixtape from Scottish afro-futurist trio Young Fathers.


Though based in Edinburgh, Young Fathers have the DNA of globalized times. The trio play a left-of-field marriage of art-rock and 90s rap laced with heavy percussion & group vocals influenced by group members Alloysious and Kayus‘ respective Liberian and Nigerian origins, as well beatsmith G's unique production. Young Fathers build their sonic nest at the crossroads of African traditions and experimental futurism, a combination that's delivered some of the most noteworthy tracks we've come across recently.

For this episode of Africa In Your Earbuds, YF deliver a 59-minute mixtape peppered by a broad cast of artists from the continent — DJ Mujava, Wizkid, Flavour, King Sunny Ade and Tshetsha Boys are all featured in the mix. Big up to Underdog for the incredible cover artwork (of which you can see an alternate version below).

Grab YF's Tape One, available now via Anticon and isten/download AIYE #38: Young Fathers below!

TRACKLIST

1. Man Hustling Carrots in Zimbabwe

2. African Mass Intro

3. Flavour "Shake"

4. Tshetsha Boys "Nwa Pfundia"

5. Wizkid "Don't Dull"

6. Ruff Rugged & Raw "Wetin Dey"

7. Sundaygar Dearboy "Dayin-Bay"

8. Adama Yalomba Mbora "Music of Mali"

9. Djeneba Jakite & Farafina Lolo "Djarabi"

10. Dj Mujava "Township Funk

11. Nwa Gezani "My Love"

12. King Sunny Ade "Alhaji Bode Osinusi & Alhaji Rasaq Ogbara"

Like African music? Previously on Africa In Your Earbuds: BBRAVE OF AKWAABA, OLD MONEYDJ NEPTUNESAHEL SOUNDSBEATENBERGM1 [DEAD PREZ]BODDHI SATVAL’AFRIQUE SOM SYSTEMENOMADIC WAXTHE BROTHER MOVES ONLVBEN ASSITER [JAMES BLAKE'S DRUMMER]JAKOBSNAKECHRISTIAN TIGER SCHOOLSAUL WILLIAMSTUNE-YARDSMATHIEU SCHREYERBLK JKSALEC LOMAMIDJ MOMAAWESOME TAPES FROM AFRICAPETITE NOIROLUGBENGARICH MEDINA, VOICES OF BLACK, LAMIN FOFANA, CHICO MANNDJ UNDERDOGDJ OBAHSABINEBROTHA ONACIDJ AQBTJUST A BANDSTIMULUSQOOL DJ MARVSINKANECHIEF BOIMA

Music

6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

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