Events

Go Inside Electrafrique Dakar With DJ Cortega & DJ Moma

DJ Cortega and DJ Moma take us inside Okayafrica's Electrafrique weekend in Dakar.


Okayafrica touched down in Senegal last month and teamed up with the Dakar-based art center/collective Les Petites Pierres and the Sisi La Famille crew for a special two-day Dakar edition of Electrafriqe.

Our weekend kicked off at Cunimb, a former concert hall belonging to the Senegalese Air Force and a regular spot back in the day for legendary bands such as Orchestra Baobab. Inside the venue, Everyday People‘s DJ Moma, all the way from New York City, and Okayafrica fam and Electrafrique founder DJ Cortega, freshly relocated to Dakar, led a high-energy dance party that also featured sets by the Dakar-based DJ Psyle and Fat Baker. Outside, Siaka Soppo Traoré operated an interactive photo studio (more on that on the next page).

Sunday, Everyday Afrique made its Dakar debut with a brunch at Les Petites Pierres.

Go inside Electrafrique Dakar with DJ Cortega and DJ Moma in a new video directed by Loic Hoquet. Follow our friends from @DakarLives for more photos from the weekend.

Update 2/26: Listen to Cortega's full Okayafrica Electrafrique Dakar mix below. Head here for the full tracklisting, featuring Dex Kwasi, Joey B, Boddhi Satva, DJ Satelite and more.

Photos by Siaka Traoré, Jean-Baptiste Joire and Bizenga Da Silvio (@bizengabiz) for @DakarLives.

Continue to page 2 for Siaka Soppo Traoré's interactive studio photographing Dakar's new generation of artists. 

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Interview
Photo: Shawn Theodore via Schure Media Group/Roc Nation

Interview: Buju Banton Is a Lyrical Purveyor of African Truth

A candid conversation with the Jamaican icon about his new album, Upside Down 2020, his influence on afrobeats, and the new generation of dancehall.

Devout fans of reggae music have been longing for new musical offerings from Mark Anthony Myrie, widely-known as the iconic reggae superstar Buju Banton. A shining son of Jamaican soil, with humble beginnings as one of 15 siblings in the close-knit community of Salt Lane, Kingston, the 46-year-old musician is now a legend in his own right.

Buju Banton has 12 albums under his belt, one Grammy Award win for Best Reggae Album, numerous classic hits and a 30-year domination of the industry. His larger-than-life persona, however, is more than just the string of accolades that follow in the shadows of his career. It is his dutiful, authentic style of Caribbean storytelling that has captured the minds and hearts of those who have joined him on this long career ride.

The current socio-economic climate of uncertainty that the COVID-19 pandemic has thrusted onto the world, coupled with the intensified fight against racism throughout the diaspora, have taken centre stage within the last few months. Indubitably, this makes Buju—and by extension, his new album—a timely and familiar voice of reason in a revolution that has called for creative evolution.

With his highly-anticipated album, Upside Down 2020, the stage is set for Gargamel. The title of this latest discography feels nothing short of serendipitous, and with tracks such as "Memories" featuring John Legend and the follow-up dancehall single "Blessed," it's clear that this latest body of work is a rare gem that speaks truth to vision and celebrates our polylithic African heritage in its rich fullness and complexities.

Having had an exclusive listen to some other tracks on the album back in April, our candid one-on-one conversation with Buju Banton journeys through his inspiration, collaboration and direction for Upside Down 2020, African cultural linkages and the next generational wave of dancehall and reggae.

This interview has been shortened and edited for clarity.

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