Popular
Photo courtesy of For the Record

London-born Mauritian singer-songwriter Lavaud.

Listen to Lavaud’s Sultry New Single ‘In This Room’

Premiere: The London-born Mauritian singer-songwriter's new song follows her recent collaboration with Nigerian artist Reekado Banks.

British artist Lavaud shares her latest single "In This Room."

The song speaks to the feeling of being stuck in a small space and longing for freedom or room to be ourselves—a feeling that most can relate to with the current state of the world.

The 25-year-old singer wrote the track, played guitar and recorded it in her home studio. It all comes naturally to her, as she grew up in an environment where music was a part of everything, "I grew up surrounded by all kinds of music. Listening to everything from Sega, a traditional Mauritian sound, Soul, Jazz, R&B, Reggae and Gospel," the artist says.


Where does her inspiration come from? The most important man in her life, "My father is my greatest influence and inspiration. He is an amazing person, musician, and teacher. I was exposed to much music with him."

Another message that reverberates from the track is a feeling of hopelessness under societal chains, "I wrote 'In This Room' as a response to feeling isolated and away from love", she says, "the truth is the whole world is in need of love… and I've decided to donate from the success of this song to the 'Black Lives Matter' foundation."

With this ballad in her repertoire, we know that there is more good to come from the mind and voice of Lavaud.

Check out our premiere of "In My Room" below.

Lavaud - In This Room (Official Audio) www.youtube.com

Read Lavaud's full quote about "In This Room" below:

"I was planning to surprise you guys by releasing a song I wrote and played on my guitar right here in my room... (called "In This Room").

But honestly, can't lie, I lost all excitement because honestly, I've been overwhelmed with sadness as a result of the cold blooded murders we continue to see from police brutality, and the disease of racism.

We are made to think that we have freedom. But it is fake. Fake freedom. if we were really free we wouldn't have to worry about being killed simply because of the colour of our skin.

The system has trapped us into thinking that we are free, but it is fake freedom. We must destroy a system which serves white privilege because enough is enough, we demand equality.

I went to the protest yesterday & it was powerful, so liberating, to be a part of this demand for change.

It gave me hope for our future, it reminded me that we all have the power to change things when we unite, when we are fearless and we we stand by each other.

I do believe we will truly really be free in this world one day and I'm committing my gifts to hoping that change.

I wrote "In This Room" as a response to feeling isolated and away from love, the truth is the whole world is in need of love... and I've decided to donate from the success of this song to the "Black Lives Matter" foundation.

Pre-Order is live tomorrow and the song is out June 12th. I decided to use my voice the best way I can, through music. I pray we all bring what we can to the table and I ask for your support.

Together the change we see, is the change we can be. #Blacklivesmatter"


Interview
Photo: Benoit Peverelli

Interview: Oumou Sangaré Proves Why She's the Songbird of Wassoulou

We caught up with the Malian singer to talk about her new Acoustic album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

When Oumou Sangaré tells me freedom is at her core, I am not surprised. If you listen to her discography, you'll be hard-pressed to find a song that doesn't center or in some way touch on women's rights or child abuse. The Grammy award-winning Malian singer has spent a significant part of her career using her voice to fight for the rights of women across Africa and the world, a testimony to this is her naming her debut studio album Moussolou, meaning Woman. The album, a pure masterpiece that solidified Oumou's place amongst the greats and earned her the name 'Songbird of Wassoulou,' was a commercial success selling over 250,000 records in Africa and would in turn go on to inspire other singers across the world.

On her latest body of work Acoustic, a reworking of her critically acclaimed 2017 album Mogoya, Oumou Sangaré proves how and why she earned her accolades. The entirety of the 11-track album was recorded within two days in the Midi Live studio in Villetaneuse in 'live' conditions—with no amplification, no retakes or overdubs, no headphones. Throughout the album, using her powerful and raw voice that has come to define feminism in Africa and shaped opinions across the continent, Oumou boldly addresses themes like loss, polygamy and female circumcision.

We caught up with the Malian singer at the studio she is staying while in quarantine to talk about her new album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.