Music

Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh Calls Out South Africa's 'Democracy and Delusion' In New Album & Book

Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh to release 'Democracy and Delusion' this month.

South African hip-hop artist, academic and activist Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh will be releasing his debut album, which will be accompanied by a book.


The book will come out later this month on August 28, while the album is due on September 6.

The project titled, Democracy and Delusion, will be politically-charged, as fans have grown to expect from the rapper.

In 2014, he broke his long hiatus from music with a no-holds-barred single which took shots at President Jacob Zuma. The song was a remake of Tunisian rapper El-General’s equally politically-charged “Rayes lebled.”

The book will consist of 10 chapters in which Mpofu-Walsh will debunk myths and, well, delusions about South Africa’s 23-year-old democracy. The album will feature artists like renowned poet Lebo Mashile, rapper Solo, and Fees Must Fall activist Busisiwe Seabe.

The rapper tells the Mail & Guardian: “The album wasn’t any easier than a master’s at Oxford. Do you know how much intellectual thought, melodic ability and technical skill is required?”

He went on to talk about how he feels about South African hip-hop’s apolitical nature. “I don’t understand how the artists and celebrities have this huge platform that could be used for so much,” he mentions, “and it’s being used for protection of the status quo. We need to show there are different ways to use the medium. This is an album of impact that doesn’t say the same thing that these artists are saying: look at me I’m so cool, I have all this money, etc. It’s about where we are in this country.”

Mpofu-Walsh was first introduced to South African hip-hop as part of the teenage trio Entity alongside rappers AKA (yes, Supa Mega) and Greyhound. They released their album Royal School of Hip-Hop and the video single “Touch and Go.” The trio had a great run until they disbanded around 2008.

Mpofu-Walsh now joins artists such as Tumi Molekane and Emile YX? who have, in the past, released books to accompany their musical projects.

You can listen to a song from Democracy and Delusion, which plays automatically on Mpofu-Walsh’s website. The track shows the rapper is in touch with current hip-hop trends as he mixes rapping and Auto-Tuned vocals over sinewy synths and pads. He talks about current affairs such as the State Capture and land reform, among other issues.

You can read his full interview with the Mail & Guardian here.

Keep up with Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh on Twitter, Facebook and his website.

Revisit our analysis of South African hip-hop's relationship with politics from 2016, here

Style
Image courtesy of Daily Paper

Wekafore Releases Fela Kuti Inspired Collab With Daily Paper

The one-of-a-kind 'The Spirit Don't Die' capsule collection celebrates African heritage and a hope for a brighter future.

Amsterdam-based African streetwear brand Daily Paper has joined Nigerian fashion brand Wekafore in creating a unique capsule collection of note. The 'The Spirit Don't Die' collection is inspired by fashion and Nigerian activism icon Fela Kuti, but celebrates the bountiful beauty, potential, and heritage of Africans.

Nigerian designer Wekaforé Maniu Jibril, owner, and designer of the Wekafore brand has been hot since his 2013 debut. The brand has gone on to become a great success within the realm of West African fashion. Wekaforé represents a newer, more fearless generation of African designers and their latest collaborative collection tells the tale.

Daily Paper x Wekaforé 'The Spirit Don't Die' collectionImage courtesy of Daily Paper


The two popular brands share a rich history and intention to further African fashion's reputation in the world, as well as as a shared desire for raw necessity, organic growth, and authentic community engagement, development and, support. The fashion brands are making it known that street and casual wear are more than we once thought - fashion can be inclusive and fun. The stars truly aligned to bring us this partnership guided by similar core values and the hunger to celebrate Africa and her diasporas through fashion.

The Fela Kuti-inspired collection is filled with distinctive and bold pieces, honoring Africa's past while paving the way towards the future. Wekafore is known for their clear integration of West Africa's 1970's cultural golden age, and this limited collection speaks to those themes, making it a no-brainer to dedicate the line to the legendary King of Afrobeat, whose style never disappointed. It's clear to see how Kuti's influence inspired the exciting and vibrant creative renaissance seen in the collection. On using Kuti as his muse, Wekaforé says, "Like Fela, the pieces are very punk, very psychedelic, and very African at the same time. And that represents me 100%. And I think being able to speak that way through a platform like Daily Paper is a testament to contemporary African consciousness."


Image courtesy of Daily Paper

Daily Paper x Wekafore 'The Spirit Don't Die' Collection

Check out more of Daily Paper x Wekafore's collection 'The Spirit Don't Die' collection here.

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