Audio

Summer BBQ Playlist

Stream a summer BBQ playlist of African music highlights from the likes of Fela Kuti, Ebo Taylor, Vis å Vis and more.


*Photo of Ebo Taylor, artwork by Samy Ben Redjeb

If you decide to beat the heat this weekend and light up the ole charcoal grill, we're here to help. Here's a playlist of classic West African afrobeat, funk, highlife, and afrojazz to keep you nice and cool. From more popular afrobeat and highlife names like Fela Kuti and Ebo Taylor to the lesser known, but recently sampled Vis å Vis, this playlist will keep the groove while you focus on the grill and drinks. Sidenote: it seemed fitting to start the playlist with a song by The Barbecues.

Interview
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Interview: Focalistic’s Blend of Hip-Hop and Amapiano Is Working

South African rapper Focalistic doesn't fixate on genre. He wants you to know his music "is for South Africans, by South Africans that sound South African."

A few weeks before Focalistic's hit single "Ke Star" is announced to have gone gold (it has since gone platinum), a large group of school kids gather around the driver seat of the rapper's sporty BMW. "I realised that people really love him during the shoot of the 'Ke Star' music video," a passer-by says. "It was wild."

Just like today. The same group, which has now grown bigger, waits outside the spot where Focalistic will sit down for an interview. They each want a picture with one of the country's most promising rappers. They have to wait until he's done answering our questions. Asked if he enjoys being mobbed by fans, he says, "It's not like I like it. But it's something you get used to and you understand it. It's love, it's never to irritate."

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