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Alec Lomami. Photo courtesy of the artist.

You Need to Hear This Playlist For Congolese Independence

Alec Lomami blends Congolese classics with newer DRC sounds for this new mix.

June 30 marks the day the Democratic Republic of Congo gained its independence from the colonial power of Belgium.

To mark the occasion, Kinshasa-raised rapper and DJ Alec Lomami put together this 18-song playlist of Congolese classics mixed in with newer sounds coming out of the DRC.


"With such a rich musical tradition and history, trying to make an essential Congolese music playlist is almost impossible, unless you want your musical expertise to be questioned. So I won't even try," Alec tells OkayAfrica.

"What I would rather do is put a sampler of some of the Congolese classics that many would already know and some of the newer acts that few might know. So it's partially essential, partially discovery—I'm pretty much just looking for excuse to share KOKOKO! my new obsession :)"

Get into Alec Lomami's Congolese Independence playlist below, available on Okayafrica's Spotify and Apple Music curator channels now.


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Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

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