Style

Asiyami Gold's Playful & Easy-To-Wear African Prints

This is about Nigerian label Asiyami Gold and their collection for Spring/Summer 14.

While New York remains in cold January days, we're already getting an idea of what to expect for S/S 14. Nigerian brand Asiyami Gold is definitely a name to remember for what could be hot and trendy come September. Featuring plain African prints, Asiyami Gold pieces are colorful, easy-to-wear and playful. You can mix and match these at your convenience and the price range is pretty affordable. Designer Asiyami Wekulom knows how to mix it up and construct garments with bright prints. This is the perfect attire for a radiant woman and we hope to see Asiyami Gold enhancing silhouettes for S/S 14. Let us know what your favorite piece is by tweeting @okayafrica with #asiyamigold.

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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