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Afrikan Boy Criticizes Capitalism And Modern Slavery In 'Mr. Kunta Kinte'

Nigerian rapper Afrikan Boy shares a witty critique of dead-end jobs and slave names in the video for "Mr. Kunta Kinte."

Afrikan Boy. Image courtesy of the artist.


Last year Afrikan Boy made a bold statement about the plight of refugees with “Border Business.” The Naija rapper returns with another socially-aware record, this time using wit and a Kunta Kinte reference to comment on everything from the nature of the music industry to dead-end jobs and, of course, slave names.

“Mr. Kunta Kinte” sees Afrikan Boy exploring fast-paced rhythms as he rhymes over booming, percussion-filled production. The music video is just as upbeat, as it follows a young man who escapes from reality through daydreams of Afrikan Boy humorously performing dance-inducing rituals on him.

“In the song, I refer to Kunta Kinte’s life; despite the struggles, the slave remained positive and never let his head down. The title of the song was really a metaphor for new age artists becoming slaves to the system and the industry,” the MC explains to Okayafrica.

“I didn't want my music to come out of a baked beans factory—different packaging but the same old stuff. I want to remain unique and keep my identity, I guess that’s why the character Kunta Kinte fit so well with the song. I ask questions about 9-5 slavery and capitalism, working for minimum wage, prejudice and racial abuse,” Afrikan Boy adds.

Peep the music video for “Mr. Kunta Kinte” below and check out the tour dates for Afrikan Boy’s upcoming UK tour.

Afrikan Boy Tour Dates

Apr 20, Electric Circus Edinburgh, UK

Apr 21, Band on the Wall Manchester, UK

Apr 22, Headrow House Leeds, UK

Apr 23, The Albany Deptford, UK

Apr 24, The Green Door Store Brighton, UK

Apr 27, The Boileroom Surrey, UK

Apr 28, Bungalows & Bears Sheffield, UK

Apr 29, St Mary in the Castle Hastings, UK

Apr 30, The Small Horse SC Bristol, UK

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Image via Sheila Afari PR.

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We know that Black queer DJs from the Midwest are behind the creation of house and dance music. Yet, a look at the current electronic scene will find it terribly whitewashed and gentrified, with the current prominent acts spinning tracks sung by unnamed soulful singers from time to time. Like many art forms created by Black people all over the world, the industry hasn't paid homage to its pioneers, despite the obvious influence they have. Thankfully, the independent music scene is thriving with many Black acts inspired by their forefathers and mothers who are here to revolutionize electronic music. Here are a list of the ones you should check out:

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