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Photos: Analog Africa


Arts and Culture magazine "Fourth & Main" interviewed Samy Redjeb, the founder and head of the record label Analog Africa, which specializes in rare Afro and Afro-Latin compilations. Sedjeb traveled across his home continent to research, archive, and craft eclectic anthologies from Africa's 'golden age' of music. You can check out an excerpt from Fourth & Main's interview with Redjeb below and read the full interview here.

Fourth & Main: When did this all start? Your first ever trip to find music and archive music?

Sammy Redjeb: When I left Senegal, I was dispatched to work in Greece, and that was actually when I realized how much I loved Africa. I was really homesick in Greece and I wanted to go back to Senegal. I heard that there was a hotel looking for a DJ. I didn't have the technical ability to be a DJ but I just said, 'Okay, let me try my luck.' I applied for the job and I got it! We were playing mostly house and dance floor and hip-hop, and I thought it might be interesting to do an African party once in a while. I proposed this idea to the owner of the club and he was really interested. The next thing I knew, he gave me money and a driver and we went to Senegal looking for music and also textiles, to decorate the whole club. So that was the first time I started buying records. At that time, I was interested in going and discovering Zimbabwe music. I felt there were a few artists who really interested me, so I quit the job in senegal, took lots of textiles and stuff with me to South Africa and sold them there. In the space of a few weeks I had sold everything, and with that money I went to Johannesburg, and from Johannesburg I went further to Zimbabwe, and that was my first real record expedition.

Fourth & Main:Do you find it strange that you are treated like a musical pioneer when actually you're going back in time to find these tunes?

Samy Redjeb: The thing I'm most proud of is when I've managed to put together a compilation that draws people in. For them to think I'm a pioneer means that the music has had an impact on them-- despite the fact that I don't think I'm a pioneer. If I had to take credit for something, it's hoping that my personal taser will have an impact on the taste of other people.

Read the rest of the interview here.

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Photo by KOLA SULAIMON/AFP via Getty Image

#EndSARS: 1 Year Later And It's Business As Usual For The Nigerian Government

Thousands filled the streets of Nigeria to remember those slain in The #LekkiTollGateMassacre...while the government insists it didn't happen.

This week marks 1 year since Nigerians began protests against police brutality and demanded an end to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). The #EndSARS protests took the world by storm as we witnessed Nigerian forces abuse, harass and murder those fighting for a free nation. Reports of illegal detention, profiling, extortion, and extrajudicial killings followed the special task force's existence, forcing the government to demolish the unit on October 11th, 2020. However, protestors remained angered and desperate to be heard. It wasn't until October 20th, when soldiers opened fire on demonstrators at Lekki tollgate in the country's capital, Lagos, that the protests came to a fatal end. More than 56 deaths from across the country were reported, while hundreds more were traumatized as the Nigerian government continued to rule by force. The incident sparked global outrage as the Nigerian army refused to acknowledge or admit to firing shots at unarmed protesters in the dead of night.

It's a year later, and nothing has changed.

Young Nigerians claim to still face unnecessary and violent interactions with the police and none of the demands towards systemic changes have been met. Fisayo Soyombo the founder of the Foundation for Investigative Journalism, told Al Jazeera, "Yes, there has not been any reform. Police brutality exists till today," while maintaining that his organization has reported "scores" of cases of police brutality over this past year.

During October 2020's protests, Nigerian authorities turned a blind eye and insisted that the youth-led movement was anti-government and intended to overthrow the administration of current President Muhammadu Buhari. During a press conference on Wednesday, in an attempt to discredit the protests, Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed hailed the Nigerian army and police forces for the role they played in the #EndSARS protests, going as far as to say that the Lekki Toll Massacre was a "phantom massacre with no bodies." These brazen claims came while protesters continued to gather in several major cities across the country. The minister even went on to shame CNN, Nigerian favorite DJ Switch as well as Amnesty International, for reporting deaths at Lekki. Mohammed pushed even further by saying, "The six soldiers and 37 policemen who died during the EndSARS protests are human beings with families, even though the human rights organizations and CNN simply ignored their deaths, choosing instead to trumpet a phantom massacre."

With the reports of abuse still coming out of the West African nation, an end to the struggle is not in sight. During Wednesday's protest, a journalist for the Daily Post was detained by Nigerian forces while covering the demonstrations.

According to the BBC, additional police units have been set up in the place of SARS, though some resurfacing SARS officers and allies claim to still be around.

Young Nigerians relied heavily on social media during the protests and returned this year to voice their opinions around the first anniversary of an experience that few will be lucky enough to forget.



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