Video

Fela Kuti's 'Zombie' Meets Flex Dance

'Fela Flex,' a production by ROOT Studies co-published by Okayafrica & NOWNESS, pairs Fela Kuti's "Zombie" with NYC flex dancers.


Today we're excited to premiere Fela Flex, a film which aims to introduce a new audience to afrobeat founder Fela Kuti's music through the art of contemporary flex dancers. The video, shot by award-winning director Dominick Sheldon, pairs Fela's 1976 anti-military government song "Zombie" with the incredible bodily movement of Brooklyn-based dancers from the film Flex Is Kings, the 2013 documentary about the East New York street dancing style known as "flexing." The piece, a production by the New York City-based ROOT Studios, co-published by Okayafrica and NOWNESS, intends to shed a modern light on the vintage Nigerian horns and drums of afrobeat. Watch it below. Everybody say yeah yeah!

Music

Interview: Ranks ATM Makes ‘Substance Music’

South African hip-hop artist Ranks ATM on his latest EP 'Substance Music', working with Riky Rick and his crew African Trap Movement's new chapter.

Ranks ATM demands to be taken seriously. With every successive release, listeners are bound to pick up on both his personal and artistic growth. His latest EP, Substance Music, released towards the end of 2020, is an honest body of work that sees the artist divulge some aspects of his life while remaining playful and entertaining.

Young2unn, who produced a majority of the project, gave Ranks ATM beats that primarily consist of keys and strings cushioned by atmospheric pads and ethereal vocal samples panned for effect. The music is soulful enough for Ranks to tell his story and gritty enough to maintain his street aesthetic.

On Substance Music, the artist strikes the balance between playful banter and poignant expression of emotions. It's what makes his raps believable in general—he presents himself as a complete human who feels pain at times but also feels himself. Songs such as "Die For Me" and "How Could It Be" are laced with specific details that could have only been extracted from his life experiences, for instance, on the former, he raps, "You cheated on me with a gym freak, you did me dirty."

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Joeboy Shares Visuals for New Track 'Lonely'

Joeboy has dropped the music video for his latest track 'Lonely'. The endearing track features on his upcoming debut album 'Somewhere Between Beauty & Magic'.