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MUSICIANS OCCUPY WALL STREET: Saturday, October 15 - Protests Worldwide + Party

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Music has long been the soundtrack of protest: Fela Kuti, Bob Marley, Mos Def, Rage Against the Machine, Saul Williams, Public Enemy, Tupac, Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, Dead Prez – the list of musicians fighting on behalf of the people goes on and on and on and on.

And in the past few weeks, musicians from all walks of life have signed on to support the #Occupy movement, standing in solidarity with the protesters on Wall Street and around the country who are demanding change. Above (and here), a few folks you may recognize - ?uesto, Moby, Kweli, Kanye, Russell, Bilal, Angelique Kidjo, and Gbenga Akinnagbe (from The Wire!) (and many more vids from others coming soon!) - are asking you to help support this movement that grows more powerful each day.

Yes, it's a rare moment when a grass roots protest movement takes over the national - and international - conversation. And on Saturday, October 15th, over 858 cities in 78 different countries will host demonstrations - including, just FYI, more than just a few on the Bright Continent itself.

What do the protesters want? A more equitable world. For people to be valued over money and corporate interests. For the human race to halt their rampant destruction of the natural earth. Specifically, in the U.S., they want money to be separated from politics. They want leaders who are not owned by corporations, but instead fight for the people's well-being and rights. They want a more equitable distribution of wealth.  (For some seriously deep statistical legitimacy for the protesters' complaints, check out this slideshow from Business Insider.)

For those of you here in the Okayafrica HQ city of New York, it's our time to shine. On Saturday dozens of community groups, unions, student organizations and lots and lots of regular folk are taking to the streets in a mass protest  - of tens of thousands - that will culminate in Times Square. In collaboration with a whole host of New York City's movers and shakers, Okayplayer and Okayafrica will participate in the  The Occupation Party as it rocks the protest with music, performance and a street party in support of the actions of Occupy Wall Street.

For those of you not in New York or unable to come out and protest - there are so many ways to help. They are enumerated here.

FIND FULL DETAILS FOR THE PARTY HERE. We hope to see you there...We are the tipping point.

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.

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