Events

Okayafrica Curates A Stage At 'Meet The Africa Center' In Harlem

Okayafrica curates a stage at the all day, all free 'Meet The Africa Center' extravaganza in Harlem, Saturday, September 20th.


This Saturday The Africa Center officially introduces itself to New York with an all-day, all FREE "Meet The Africa Center" extravaganza at the Africa Center's home in Harlem (5th Avenue at 110th Street). Okayafrica is excited to be curating a stage all day (11am-6pm) for the event, where you'll find DJ Birane (Côte d'Ivoire), DJ Underdog, and Rich Medina spinning tunes from all over the continent. Later in the day we'll have live performances from Sierra Leone's Janka Nabay and the Bubu Gang (with special guest Bajah from Bajah + The Dry Eye Crew!), and we'll go out with a bang with Chop & Quench (The FELA! band). Hosting the stage all day is Sahr Ngaujah (star of FELA! on Broadway).

In addition to the Okayafrica Stage, the Africa Center will also have tons of incredible art on hand, including an installation from Nigerian sound artist Emeka Ogboh with some of his danfo bus as well as Beninese conceptual artist Meschac Gaba, dance by The Dance Theater of Harlem, and so much more. See below for more details on the event and follow the Africa Center on twitter and facebook.

The Okayafrica Stage At "Meet The Africa Center" Line Up:

DJ Birane: 11-12pm

DJ Underdog: 12-12:30pm

DJ Rich Medina: 12:30pm-2:30pm

Janka Nabay and the Bubu Gang: 2:30pm-3:45pm

DJ Underdog: 3:45pm-4:45pm

Chop & Quench (the FELA! band): 4:45pm-6:00pm

* Chop & Quench (the FELA! band)

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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