Featured

Audio: Derek Gripper's Music from the Strings of Mali [LP]


It’s difficult to describe with the dull thud of words the transcendent, outer-worldly, quality of South African guitarist Derek Gripper’s musical explorations on his ninth recording, One Night on Earth: Music from the Strings of Mali. A complex undertaking of ‘translating’ West African Kora music to solo guitar. “This album is a world first” his website says, “a recording of Malian kora music on solo acoustic guitar... The complete solo works of Malian kora legend Toumani Diabate, with tracks by fellow Malians Ali Farka Toure and Ballake Sissoko as well as a track by French cellist Vincent Segal (from his collaboration with Sissoko). A truly original African Guitar sound and a fresh and ground-breaking proposal for a redefinition of African classical music.” Stream below and download the album for a small fee.

Interview

Adekunle Gold Is Living His Best Life

We speak to the Nigerian star about how marriage and fatherhood have led him to find both newfound happiness and newfound freedom as an artist.

''I'm having the time of my life,'' says Adekunle Gold over a Zoom call while seated in his office in Lagos. ''I'm making songs that are so true to my current energy, my current vibe.'' When I got on the call with the 34-year-old artist on a Wednesday afternoon, the first thing I noticed was his hair tied up in little braids, the second was his wide smile. As we speak, the crooner laughs multiple times but it's his aura that shines through the computer screen, it lets you know better than his words that he's truly having the time of life.

Born Adekunle Kosoko, the popular Nigerian singer got married barely two years ago to fellow artist Simi. Last year, the power couple welcomed their first child. As we talk, Gold points to his journey as a father and a husband as some of the biggest inspirations at the moment not just as far as music goes but as his perspective in life and how he now approaches things.

''My [artistry] has changed a lot because being a father and being a husband has made me grow a lot and more.'' Adekunle Gold tells OkayAfrica. ''It has made me understand life a lot more too. I'm feeling more responsible for people. You know, now I have a kid to raise and I have a wife to support, to be a real man and husband and father for.'' He credits this journey with both his newfound happiness and a newfound freedom as an artist.

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