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In Her Poem "How Many More?" Lula Saleh Explores the Hardships Faced by Refugees

This spoken word video on the refugee crisis asks, "How many more must die?"

DIASPORA—In a touching poem entitled, How Many More Must Die?, Lula Saleh—an Eritrean-Ethiopian songwriter and poet—explores the excruciating journey thousands of refugees attempt each day in search of a better life. The poem is accompanied by visuals of migrants on crowded speedboats—their faces weary and scared, scenes of cramped refugee camps and of children crossing railway tracks.


Throughout the poem, Saleh questions governments and people's desensitization to human suffering.

“They have no licenses when they arrive even when we entice them with the dreams we sell of picket fences, freedom of religion, and democracy. We tell them come, come here be free. But when it's too many of you refugees, we'll say go back, go back where you came from or stay in the water and die," she sings.

To listen to the poem in full, watch the video below.

Audio
(Youtube)

7 Gengetone Acts You Need to Check Out

The streets speak gengetone: Kenya's gengetone sound is reverberating across East Africa and the world, get to know its main purveyors.

Sailors' "Wamlambez!"Wamlambez!" which roughly translates to "those who lick," is the cry the reverberated round the world, pushing the gengetone sound to the global stage. The response "wamnyonyez" roughly translates to "those who suck" and that should tell you all you need to know about the genre.

Known for its lewd lyrics and repetitive (often call and response) hooks, gengetone makes no apologies for belonging to the streets. First of all, most artists that create gengetone are grouped into bands with a few outliers like Zzero Sufuri riding solo. The songs themselves often feature a multiplicity of voices with screams and crowds coming through as ad libs, adding to this idea that this is definitely "outside" music.

Listening to Ethic's Odi wa Muranga play with his vocal on the track "Thao" it's easy to think that this is the first, but gengetone fits snuggly in a history of sheng rap based on the kapuka style beat. Kapuka is onomatopoeically named, the beats have that repetitive drum-hat-drum skip that sounds like pu-ka-pu-ka-pu. Artists like Nonini were asking women to come over using this riff long before Ochungulo family told them to stay home if they aren't willing to give it up.

Here's seven gengetone groups worth listening to.

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