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Watch Black Coffee Speak Working with Usher, Fake News and Upcoming Album with Zane Lowe on Beats 1

Black Coffee shares some good news and condemns fake news about xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

Black Coffee released a new single yesterday titled "LaLaLa" and featuring Usher. More about that here.

Amidst the hype generated by the single, Black Coffee just did an interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music's Beats 1 in which he spoke about the collaboration. "Since I was a kid," said Black Coffee, "Usher was a big star. But it's beyond that, he's one of the most talented people that I've always wanted to work with and what was even better was meeting him. He's one of the coolest people."


Black Coffee also announced that he's dropping an album before the year.

"I'm about to drop an album," he said, "so I've been working like with different artists. I have some beautiful songs coming. I'm very excited. I'm currently working on one with Riot. It's almost finished. I think it's going to be my next single after I play it out in the clubs. It's time for music for me, man. And I've been doing the touring thing since the beginning of the year, and in between, I tried to make studio time. I'm coming up to LA, I'm going to finish up some like touch-ups in studio. And then before the end of the year for Christmas, I want to release an album."

The DJ and producer also spoke about the fake news that have been adding fuel to an already raging fire of xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

"We have to educate ourselves with what's really happening," Black Coffee told Zane Lowe. "One of the things I was show was a building in Nigeria being burnt down by Nigerians, and they were saying it's a south African business being burnt down because people are upset. Only to find out that it didn't happen."

Read: Here is All the Fake News About South Africa's Current Xenophobic AttacksHere

Fake news has caused a lot of harm in the current situation in South Africa. A lot of videos that weren't even taken in South Africa were circulated on social media with misleading captions.

Watch Black Coffee's interview Zane Lowe below and stream "LaLaLa" below.


Music

6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

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