Style

Meet the Black Dandies From Shantrelle P. Lewis' Book Launch

Check out the looks from Shantrelle P. Lewis' 'Dandy Lion: The Black Dandy and Street Style' book launch event at the Brooklyn Museum.

DIASPORA—Last week, Shantrelle P. Lewis, the curator and author of the new book Dandy Lion: The Black Dandy and Street Style, brought out some of the most dapper men in Brooklyn for her book launch at the Brooklyn Museum. There was a critical discussion about the politics of black dandyism, respectability, representation and more.


A plethora of sharply dressed folks came to represent the movement—exemplifying the spirit of dandy style and marrying eclectic designs from the continent and the diaspora to create their own, one-of-a-kind looks.

With her book, Lewis aims to highlight the multiplicity of the black experience. "Blackness is not monolithic, nor is black masculinity," she told OkayAfrica in an interview. "There’s a wealth of diversity within blackness, and at the same time, we need to look at black masculinity on the spectrum where it exists."

We were present for her book launch, and the event was brimming with black men using their sartorial prowess to tell their own nuanced narratives. Check out some pictures from the event, below shot by David McDuffie. 

Photo by David McDuffie

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

Photo by David McDuffie.

 

 

 

 

 

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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