Malian Psychedelic Rock Group Songhoy Blues Performs Live On Okayafrica TV

Watch Songhoy Blues play an electric rendition of "Soubour" in New York City, a highlight from their debut album 'Music In Exile.'

Mali’s desert rock ensemble Songhoy Blues made waves this year with the release of their debut album Music In Exile. The collection of 11 songs is shaped by the band’s displacement after their hometown of Gao in northern Mali was overrun by conflict in 2012.

The band had a strike of luck after cold-calling an Africa Express producer while he was in Bamako, which eventually led them to record with Yeah Yeah Yeahs guitarist Nick Zinner and sign with Atlantic Records—becoming the first African act the major label has signed in over 40 years.

The band’s story is prominently featured in the documentary film They Will Have To Kill Us First: Malian Music In Exile, which follows Songhoy Blues and other Malian musicians as they resist the cultural repression sweeping through their nation.

Okayafrica TV recently captured Songhoy Blues’ electric live set during their show at Rough Trade in New York City. Watch our music video style clip of the group performing "Soubour” below, which we’re dropping today in conjunction with the release of They Will Have To Kill Us First across the UK & Ireland, as well as the formation of the Music In Exile fund.


Interview: Wavy The Creator Is Ready to See You Now

The multidisciplinary Nigerian-American artist on tapping into all her creative outlets, creating interesting things, releasing a new single and life during quarantine.

A trip canceled, plans interrupted, projects stalled. It is six months now since Wavy the Creator has had to make a stop at an undisclosed location to go into quarantine and get away from the eye of the pandemic.

The professional recording artist, photographer, writer, fashion artist, designer, and evolving creative has been spending all of this time in a house occupied by other creatives. This situation is ideal. At least for an artist like Wavy who is always in a rapid motion of creating and bringing interesting things to life. The energy around the house is robust enough to tap from and infuse into any of her numerous creative outlets. Sometimes, they also inspire trips into new creative territories. Most recently, for Wavy, are self-taught lessons on a bass guitar.

Wavy's days in this house are not without a pattern, of course. But some of the rituals and personal rules she drew up for herself, like many of us did for internal direction, at the beginning of the pandemic have been rewritten, adjusted, and sometimes ditched altogether. Some days start early and end late. Some find her at her sewing machine fixing up thrift clothes to fit her taste, a skill she picked up to earn extra cash while in college, others find her hard at work in the studio, writing or recording music.

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