Audio

Daymé Arocena's 'Eleggua' Is A Beautiful Afro-Cuban Ode to Santería's God of Crossroads

Exclusive: Watch our premiere of Afro-Cuban singer Daymé Arocena's new Havana-shot music video for "Eleggua."

Daymé Arocena's new album, Cubafonía, is a wonder of handcrafted Afro-Cuban music, bringing the rhythms of today's Cuba—not just the '50s Cuban sound that you hear so often—to the world.


"Eleggua," one of the standout compositions from Daymé's latest album, blends Afro-Cuban rhythms with bursting horns and jazz influences.

The single's Havana shot music video, which we're premiering here today, which splits scenes of Daymé singing to the backdrop of her city while a dancer beautifully explores an act of spiritual communication with Eleggua, Santería's god of the crossroads.

"Eleggua begins and finishes everything in Santeria," Daymé writes to OkayAfrica. "He is the God of the 21 Ways and for us it's really important to always take the right path. That is why [I] started this album playing for him, 'cause we are looking for the key of the best "way." In Cuba we call this kind of rhythm “Afro”—we adopted many traditions from Africa that are now part of the folklore and culture of Cuba."

Watch our premiere of the new music video for "Eleggua," directed by Savanah Leaf, above and catch Daymé on her upcoming US tour dates.

Cubafonía is available now.

 

Interview

Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

The 7 Best Nigerian Songs of the Month (July)

Featuring Olamide, Lady Donli, Omah Lay, Adekunle Gold, Falz and more.