Audio

Okayplayer Holiday Jam ft. The Roots, Gary Clark Jr, Big Daddy Kane + more!


Rahzel + Shaggy tearing it up, free apple cider shots for the ENTIRE club from our main man + Brooklyn Bowl owner Pete Shapiro, and Big Freedia and her "Azz Everywhere" - you know, just another legendary Okayplayer Holiday Jam with The Roots. What else was amazing? Free dranks thanks to Heineken, aerialists doing the splits above The Roots, and opening DJ sets from OKP Editor at large, Eddie "STATS" and OKA's own Chief Boima, along with LargeUp's own DJ Gravy and so much more. Warming up the stage, the Music Unites Youth Choir opened the show, followed by Black Thought co-signees The Wurx who brought fresh Philly-style raps.

Next up, godfathers The Roots took the stage for an extended jam with a laundry list of Okay family and friends. Throughout the night special guests included Gary Clark Jr. who graced the stage and flexed his guitar chops, Big Daddy Kane who spit classics alongside Black Thought, and Rahzel who showed why he’s the human beat box extraordinaire. Angelique Kidjo and Bajah + The Dry Eye Crew tore it up, repping Okayafrica all the way. And LargeUp kept shit bombastic with Shaggy and Patra the Dancehall Queen, along with Mr. Eazy, Red Fox, and Rayvon. We also got some instrumental goodness thanks to Ray Angry and Robert Glasper on keys, repping for Revivalist. And after all that, DJ ?uestlove brought it home on the 1s and 2s with a Bowl Train after-party. Check out the photos below c/o our dude Terrence Jennings!

Interview

Malian Rapper Ami Yerewolo Rises Against All Odds

Ami Yerewolo reflects on her hard-won rap career, new album AY and why she insists on creating support spaces for young female rappers in Mali and beyond.

"No one is a prophet in his or her own land!" This is an accurate way to describe Ami Yerewolo's career to a tee. The Malian rapper's music has not always been popular in her home country, where female rappers are generally frowned upon. Instead, it has taken off abroad. Yerewolo's upbeat sound mixes traditional Malian elements with fast drums, contemporary beats and significant lyrics that compel listeners to reflect on life — all of which makes her songs carry a universal appeal. Her new album, AY (titled after the rapper's initials) has just been released by the label Othentiq.

Yerewolo shares her frank thoughts below...

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