Audio: Junior Freeman's "Dumyarea" is Hipco from Liberia
Our friends over at Africa Is a Country have hipped us to the stirring sounds of Liberia's musical renaissance. A generation of young urbanites is creating new forms of dynamic music including a hip-hop infused genre called "Hipco." One of these new musical pioneers is Junior Freeman, who has taken the oft heard phrase "Dumyarea" and made it the basis for a rollicking populist dance anthem. The term itself is used by sellers in markets to stake their claim on a certain area. Of course the phrase has migrated into everyday use among Liberians. It has become so popular that President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf used it to help launch her (yes, Liberia's Prez is a woman!) re-election campaign.
Freeman's song is done in the Gbema style, which is basically like taking some traditional Liberian music and putting it through a digital sieve. While the song has a political tone, don't expect anything to serious or somber. This is a catchy up-beat track that will leave you with a sunny disposition and the urge to turn anything in your immediate area into a drum. Listen below.