Afro-Norwegians Nico & Vinz Take Over The Summer With 'Am I Wrong'

Afro-Norwegian singers/songwriters Nico & Vinz perform their summer anthem "Am I Wrong" live on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon.

Afro-Norwegians Nico Sereba and Vincent Dery, more famously known by the duo’s stage name Nico & Vinz, have taken over airways with their infectious, feel-good, summer anthem “Am I Wrong” (the track is the most shazam-ed song at the moment, top 5 on iTunes singles charts, top 5 on Spotify's most played tracks and has become a multi-platinum #1 hit… I could go on but I digress). This week the Oslo-based pair rocked The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon backed by The Roots with a rousing live performance of their 'no clouds in the sky'-ready single. The singer/songwriters of Ivorian and Ghanaian descent respectively got the Tonight Show crowd on their feet with some Azonto-infused dance moves and contagious energy that filled the studio.

Often joking that there ARE black people in Norway, Nico & Vinz are extremely vocal about their blended ethnicities and the many spaces and places that shape their eclectic, pop, West African dance, reggae fused sound. Recently, the pair paid tribute to their African heritage in the Kavar Singh-directed visuals for their chart-smashing hit, for which they traveled to Maun, Bostwana to capture some light-hearted, everyday moments that are often overshadowed in Western media by representations that cloud Africa in tragedy and old and tired tropes.

The pair will be bringing their 'stay true to yourself' anthem — which was inspired by their personal experience possessing huge dreams in a small country — and their genre-bending borderless music to stages around the world as they embark on a run of shows opening for Bruno Mars' "Moonshine Jungle" tour. Listen to an interview where the duo talks more about their African roots and check out Nico & Vinz's Tonight Show performance below.

Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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