Music

Watch Beyoncé Pay Homage to Fela Kuti During Her Coachella Performance

The singer's band played Fela Kuti's "Zombie" during her unforgettable set last night.

Unless you've been living under a wi-fi-less rock for the past few days, you've heard all the hype around #BeyChella—Beyoncé's highly-anticipated return to the stage at this year's Coachella music festival in California.

The star took over the festival's main stage last night for a 2 hour-long set which saw her running through her entire discography, bringing to the stage special guests like Jay-Z, Solange and even fellow Destiny's Child bandmates Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams.

As expected, Beyoncé's set was electrifying and filled with odes to various aspects of black music, history and culture. At one point, the singer payed homage to Fela Kuti as her band ran through a pulsating rendition of the afrobeat legend's 1976 classic "Zombie." Check out the clip below.


It's certainly not the first time Beyoncé has paid her respects to Fela, she's spoken of his inspiration on her music on several occasions, even recording a 20-track Fela Kuti-inspired album prior to the release of her album 4 back in 2011.

The singer is the first black woman ever to headline the festival and her performance was brimming with references to black history and icons, female empowerment, and even historically black universities. She opened her show by singing "Lift Every Voice and Sing," also known as the Black National Anthem, before being joined on stage by a group of majorettes and a full marching band.

Of course, the internet has been ablaze all morning with folks trying to figure out how to enroll at Beyoncé's #HBeyCU and candid reactions to how amazingly black and proud #BeyChella was.








Needless to say, #BeyChella was an experience. The singer will return to the Coachella stage again next weekend so prepare to have your edges snatched again before they even have a chance to grow back! You can stream all the Coachella action live here.

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Photo by Daniel Beloumou Olomo / AFP

AFCON 2021: Ranking the Best Jerseys at the Tournament

Despite skepticism on the fate of Africa’s biggest football competition, the African Cup of Nations returned with great fanfare on Sunday, January 9. All eyes are on host country Cameroon, who started their campaign to win the tournament for the sixth time by beating Burkina Faso.

Elsewhere, Nigeria’s Super Eagles triumphed over Egypt with a solitary goal from Kelechi Iheanacho. A total of 24 countries are competing in Cameroon, incentivized by a prize money that’s been bumped up $500,000 since the last edition in 2019.

But AFCON isn’t just about cash payouts, dribbles and goals. Once again, it’s time to look at which African country is parading the best kits. Football and fashion are two worlds that have always collided. Over the years kits have been updated or revised to look modern. What makes a good kit? This is a complex question, and interwoven in the answer are simplicity, clever design, style, or just elements of nostalgia. As superficial as this exercise is, its implication is sweetly in the bragging rights.

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Music
Photo: Janto Djassi.

The Acoustic Cabo Verdean Sounds of The Ano Nobo Quartet

The Strings of São Domingos offers a a global story with Cabo Verde at its center—a creole melting pot in the middle of the Atlantic attracting the best from four continents.

Vik Sohonie, founder of Ostinato Records, gives us some background on his upcoming release 'The Strings of São Domingos' by The Ano Nobo Quartet.

In 1989, as the Berlin Wall collapsed in front of the world’s eyes, a burly soldier from Cabo Verde stood on the East German side. Nicknamed “El Bruto” or “The Brute” because of his “brutally” good prowess on the guitar, Pascoal watched the end of an era in full uniform, the ever dutiful soldier. As a member of the FARP, the armed wing of Cabo Verde’s independence struggle, which was backed by the Soviet Union, Pascoal was dispatched the world over—from Cuba to Crimea to East Berlin.

Being stationed in Cuba gave him access to a world of guitar music. His stints in the Caribbean and the Crimean Peninsula were alongside soldiers from elsewhere in Lusophone Africa and the former colonized world. Not required on the battlefield, these military postings became cultural gatherings and, quite simply, jam sessions, where sounds and techniques were exchanged.

Today, along with fellow guitar maestros, Fany, Nono, and Afrikanu, Pascoal leads The Ano Nobo Quartet, named after Cabo Verde’s most legendary composer, Ano Nobo, Pascoal’s mentor and father to the rest of the group. Until today, Ano Nobo’s face graces murals across the archipelago.

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Photo: Elizabeth Okwach

The Art Clubs Helping to Uplift Nairobi's Informal Settlements

Over the past few years, a number of art centers have sprung up in Mukuru, Nairobi, to help budding artists hone their skills and earn a living from their creations too.

Living in an informal settlement is reality for more than 1.5 million people in Nairobi, according to a recent census, and that figure is set to rise, owing to the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to ravage Kenya. Despite the poverty, pollution and insecurity, creativity continues to thrive, as people defy struggles and bust stereotypes of being poor and powerless. And it’s in the urban slums nestled deep in the heart of Nairobi’s industrial area where Kenya’s renowned artists and art centers, including Mukuru Art Club, Wajukuu Art Center and Art Boyz, among others, can be found.

Adam Masava, a prolific and self-taught artist, born and raised in the heart of Mukuru Fuata Nyayo, has built a career around improving the living conditions of his fellow slum-dwellers with a state-of-the-art center, popularly known as Mukuru Art Club. It was established in 2008 as a way of giving back to the community, a place where kids as young as eight are enrolled to learn art, and older ones are mentored.

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It's Official: British Vogue Has Made 2022 The Year of the African Model

The major fashion magazine's February 2022 issue features 9 gloriously Black and African models - and we can't get enough.