Events

Okayafrica Presents Black Coffee, DJ Spoko & Electrafrique At SummerStage In Central Park [Photos + Recap]

Okayafrica presents Black Coffee, DJ Spoko & Electrafrique at Central Park SummerStage was the first in Okayplayer's Summer Concert Series.

Okayafrica had the honor to present a special night in Central Park with Black Coffee, DJ Spoko and Electrafrique DJs Cortega and Underdog. It was a packed house at our big South African house bash, which we presented in collaboration with the South African Consulate General-NY to celebrate 20 Years of Freedom and Democracy in South Africa and the National Youth Month. Representing Okayafrica Electrafrique NYC, Cortega and Underdog kicked the evening off early with an outdoor edition of our hot and sweaty monthly dance party. After Consul General to the South African Consulate General George Monyemangene's welcoming note, the phenomenal Ntomb'khona Dlamini took the stage to perform the South African anthem "Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika." Next up was Pretoria's "Bacardi house" pioneer DJ Spoko, fresh from Barcelona where he performed the night before with his South African "superband" Fantasma alongside Spoek Mathambo. Making his North American debut, crowd-pleaser Spoko introduced NYC to his signature township funk. And with two top notch sets in the bag and the sun just beginning to set, it was time for Black Coffee to bring down the (soulful) house. We could have danced all night with the Soulistic don, who brought out special surprise guest vocalists Kenny Bobien and Monique Bingham. But alas after two hours of non-stop music from South Africa's premiere DJ, the night had come to a close. But not before one final "Superman" farewell. Take a look at photos of Black Coffee, Spoko, Electrafrique's Cortega and Underdog and more tearing down Central Park in the gallery above.


Okayafrica's party at Central Park was the first in Okayplayer's 5-Part Summer Concert Series. Find out the details on our 4 other FREE and stacked SummerStage in Central Park parties left this summer and enter to win VIP passes here.

All photos by Jake Salyers

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Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Qatar Museums

Influential Louis Vuitton And Off-White Designer Virgin Abloh, Dies at 41

The popular Ghanian-American designer had been battling a rare form of cancer in private for several years.

The fashion industry has lost a talented, unique, and boundary-pushing influence this weekend.

41-year-old Ghanianian-American designer Virgil Abloh has died after a 2 year battle with a rare form of cancer, a statement from his associates LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said on Sunday. Abloh, founder of luxury streetwear brand Off-White, and artistic director of men's wear at French fashion house Louis Vuitton leaves his wife Shannon, and 2 children - Lowe and Grey. Chairman and CEO of LVMH Bernard Arnault said in a statement, "We are all shocked after this terrible news. Virgil was not only a genius designer, a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom." "The LVMH family joins me in this moment of great sorrow, and we are all thinking of his loved ones after the passing of their husband, their father, their brother, or their friend," he added.

After the news broke on Sunday, Abloh started trending on Twitter, with fans of the designer remembering his influence on music, art, and fashion. The 1990s saw Abloh DJ and the creative director once told The Guardian in a 2016 interview, "When the phone is off, I play my favorite songs really loud for myself, and I'm not talking to anyone. I'm not managing anything. It's just like a time when I can listen to music… I'll be DJing after I'm done designing or doing anything else." Virgil got his hands into designing album artworks after strumming up a friendship with American rapper Kanye West before becoming the creative director of West's DONDA Creative House. More recently known for his creative streetwear brand 'Off-White' the designer became popular among fashion-conscious youngsters and will forever be immortalized.

A statement posted to Abloh's Instagram explained that "Virgil chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture"

Friends, fans, and colleagues took to social media to share their well-wishes for Virgil as he transitions to his next destination.



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How Relocating to Ghana Helped Reinvigorate Jewelry Designer Aisha Asamany's Work

Moving to Ghana gave Aisha Asamany's luxury jewelry brand, inspired by Adinkra symbols that traditionally project strength, fearlessness, love and power, renewed verve to tell personal stories of her growing clientele.