News

Madlib & Yasiin Bey Recording An Album Inspired By Zamrock

Madlib and Mos Def (Yasiin Bey) have plans to record an album inspired by 1970s Zambian psychedelic rock, aka Zamrock.


As Okayplayer points out, Madlib recently dropped a bomb in a recent Rolling Stone interview for his new Quasimoto album. Amidst talk of his new Madlib Invazions imprint, the Beat Konducta spoke on plans to release an album inspired by 1970s psychedelic Zambian rock, aka Zamrock, with none other than Yasiin Bey, fka Mos Def:

You’re making an album with Mos Def that’s inspired by Zambian rock from the 1970s. How did that come about?

We’ve been working on it for a long time. I’ve got a lot of unreleased tracks with him, and when he comes to L.A., we link up. I showed him all the Zambian stuff from the group Witch that [Now-Again Records' Eothen "Egon" Alapatt] released on Now-Again. Mos loved it. I have another album, too, full of all Indian Bollywood sampling stuff that I did with Mos. We’ll hopefully put out an album of that later.

Needless to say, we're amped. Check back here for any of those Madlib x Bey zamrock-inspired tracks to drop. While you wait, browse our feature Zamrock: The Best 1970s Zambian Psychedelic Rock Tracks and try and picture those two over guitars like these below.

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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