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Photo courtesy of Lazarus

Watch Lazarus' New Music Video For 'Moyo Wanga'

"This song talks about my life and my struggle, the dangers and discrimination I've faced because I have albinism. Now I have an opportunity to fight for the survival of my people," says Lazarus.

Lazarus is a rising artist from Malawi who's fighting for social change for people with albinism in his country, and across Africa.

He just released his debut album, Stomp On The Devil, which blends traditional Malawian styles with modern folk, all shaped by Lazarus' past as a street musician.

The 11-song record was produced by Johan Hugo, who you may know from his work with The Very Best, Baaba Maal, and Mumford & Sons, and was recorded outside Lazarus' house to better capture the sound of the streets of Malawi.

As a person with albinism, Lazarus suffers a lot of senseless persecution in Malawi, an issue that's at the focus of the short documentary, Lazarus, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival this year.

Today we're premiering the new music video for "Moyo Wanga" released alongside Extinction Rebellion. The video, directed by Johan Hugo, follows Lazarus as he performs at home in Malawi, as well as across New York City, through rotoscoped footage.

It features cameos from Leonardo DiCaprio, Mumford & Sons, David Arquette, Bon Iver, The National, Banning Eyre, and more.


Lazarus feat Extinction Rebellion - Moyo Wanga (Official Video) youtu.be

"I wrote this song with my little brother Petulo when we had a band in the village about 15 years ago," Lazarus tells OkayAfrica. "Petulo also had albinism. Unfortunately he died from skin cancer and I moved to Lilongwe to try to make a living from busking. This song talks about my life and my struggle, the dangers and discrimination I've faced because I have albinism.Now i have an opportunity to fight for the survival of my people with albinism. We need to stop the hunting and killings of people with albinism now."

"Extinction Rebellion is fighting for the survival of our planet and all life," he continues, "Malawi has seen too much flooding and drought from global warming in recent years, and the danger we're facing with global warming is now jeopardizing the survival of my people in Malawi. we need to do big changes in the world to stop this climate emergency now too."

Watch the new music video for "Moyo Wanga" above and find out more about Lazarus here.

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Photo: Hugo Glendinning & Gavin Rodgers.

Listen to Tony Allen & Hugh Masekela's New Song 'Slow Bones'

Premiere: The Nigerian and South African legend come together in this new single from their upcoming album Rejoice, the first post-humous release from Masekela.

Nigerian afrobeat pioneer Tony Allen and South African jazz legend Hugh Masekela began recording together in 2010.

Though they'd known each other since the 1970s, through their friendship & work with Fela, it took forty years—and a coinciding tour schedule that saw them both in the UK at the same time—for Allen and Masekela to make it to a London studio together.

It was there that, along with producer Nick Gold, they recorded the "kind of South African-Nigerian swing-jazz stew" that will make up their upcoming album, Rejoice, as Allen describes it.

Those recording sessions remained largely untouched until after Masekela's passing in 2018, which drove Allen and Gold to revisit the tapes of those original compositions with the aim of finishing their now ten-year-old project.

Today we're premiering the latest single from the album, "Slow Bones," a head-nodding blend of Allen's afrobeat percussion and Masekela's trumpet melodies. "I don't know why this track is called 'Slow Bones.' Hugh came up with all the song titles while we were recording in 2010, and we've left them exactly as he wrote them down," Tony Allen tells OkayAfrica.

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Photo: Ben Depp.

Watch Yilian Canizares & Paul Beaubrun's Beautiful Video For 'Noyé'

"Cuba and Haiti come together to share the love and heritage of our deep rooted culture and spirituality."

Yilian Canizares and Paul Beaubrun connect for the serene "Noyé," one of the highlights from Canizares' latest album, Erzulie.

The Cuban singer and Haitian artist are now sharing the new Arnaud Robert-directed music video for the single, which we're premiering here today.

"Noyé is a song that comes from our roots," Yilian Canizares tells OkayAfrica. "Inspired by the energy of love. The same love that kept Africa's legacy alive in the hearts of Haiti and Cuba. We wanted to do a stripped down version of only the essential pieces from a musical point of view. Something raw and beautiful where our souls would be naked."

The striking music video follows Canizares and Beaubrun to the waters of New Orleans, the universal Creole capital, where they sing and float until meeting on the Mississippi River.

"Noyé is a cry of love from children of African descent," says Paul Beaubrun. "Cuba and Haiti come together to share the love and heritage of our deep rooted culture and spirituality."

Watch the new music video for "Noyé" below.

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News Brief
Photo by Gallo Images/Brenton Geach.

South Africans Condemn Police Brutality During National Lockdown

A number of videos have emerged on social media allegedly showing the intimidation and assault of several Black South Africans by law enforcement.

South Africa recently began a nationwide lockdown in an effort to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has been deployed across the nation to aid the police in ensuring that the rules of the lockdown are upheld. However, disturbing footage has emerged on social media allegedly depicting law enforcement agents assaulting Black South Africans.

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Image by Sabelo Mkhabela.

This Is What It Takes for South African Musicians to Succeed Abroad

Jeremy Loops, Shimza, Moonchild Sanelly and GoodLuck discuss what it took to build their names overseas.

Disclaimer: The conversation which this piece makes reference to took place before the COVID-19 pandemic hit South Africa.

"I said it for 10 years that I'm going to work with Beyoncé, and everybody laughed for those 10 years. And I said it with conviction. Today, I'm on a Grammy-nominated album [on a song] with Beyoncé right now," says Moonchild Sanelly referring to the song "MY POWER" in which she's featured in alongside Busiswa, Nija, Yemi Alade, Tierra Whack and of course Queen B herself. The track is a fan-favorite from the Lion King: The Gift soundtrack album curated by Beyoncé. Moonchild is pulling out these receipts to elaborate a point she just made about self-belief which helped her build a career that's recognized globally, a feat very few South African artists have achieved.

A few of those artists— Jeremy Loops, Shimza and Juliet Harding (a member of the versatile electronic band GoodLuck)—are on the podium alongside Moonchild during the Midem Africa Conference in Langa, Cape Town towards the end of February. The four musicians are in conversation with Trenton Birch, musician and founder of Bridges for Music Academy, sharing their secrets to breaking into the highly competitive and advanced music markets of mainly Europe and the US.

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