Africa In Your Earbuds

The Okayafrica Mixtape Series: AFRICA IN YOUR EARBUDS #1

When we re-launched Okayafrica this March (or launched for reals, really), we asked some of our favorite peeps if they would curate a playlist or mixtape of their favorite African or African-inspired music to share with the rest of the music-loving world.


To christen the series - Africa In Your Earbuds – world traveling DJ, producer, writer, and Dutty Artz crew member Chief Boima (who is currently somewhere in Liberia wrapping his head around urbanism, globalization and, as some in our office would hope, daggering in Freetown not far from ancestral hometown) sent us this 40+ minutes of excellent African sounds. We've been bumping it non-stop.

It also is stands as the first installment of the new Ghetto Palms Redux column over at our good friends The Fader, written by Okayplayer’s own Eddie Stats. Here’s what Eddie has to say about Boima’s choices - and we’re not saying it ourselves, cuz it couldn’t be said better:

What I really love about this shit is the range; it gives you the breadth of an actual Chief Boima club set from afropop to soca to reggaeton/kuduro and house. My favorite moments, though, are double-time and digital; the points where Ghana or Angola synchs up with a flash of “Black & Yellow” or “Look At Me Now” -- probably because of all the conversations with Boima, where he’s talked about that being his zone, his micro-climate: the African in African-American.

For Boima that connection is obviously up close & personal but it’s also one that I think really resonates with now. I get the sense that Cubans and Brazilians—even the ones of European descent—are conscious of how much of their unique national identity is African. But despite all the post-blackness talk, and the narrowing of the ‘empathy gap’ that is embodied by a president who is not just black but 2nd-generation Kenyan, Americans seem to have a mental block about it. There are notable exceptions (for instance Midwest Electric - Wills Glasspiegel’s Afropop Worldwide piece on Juke and Detroit Techno) but even recognizing Africa in black American culture is usually cloaked in uncomfortable “Coming to America” jokes. Now try telling the white kid in the next row that his whole American belief system (Not just Hemingway’s ideal of “grace under pressure” for instance, but the whole concept of “cool”) is just a set of classical African concepts transplanted into North American soil.

 

DOWNLOAD AFRICA IN YOUR EARBUDS #1

[audio:http://www.okayafrica.com/wp-content/uploads/OkayAfricaChiefBoima.mp3|titles=Chief Boima Mix]

For more on Boima, check here. Tracklisting after the jump.

AFRICA IN YOUR EARBUDS #1 TRACKLIST:

Lulu, “Alhamdulillah”

I-10, “100 Percent vs. Look at Me Now”

Sarkodie, “Lay Away” f. Sway & JaySo

Dagrin, “Thank God” f. Omawunmi

Iba One, “No Limit vs. Poirier Black and Yellow Soca Remix”

Surpluz Rage, “What About”

M.I., “Blaze” (f. Jesse Jags, Ice Prince & Blaise)

Vybz Kartel, “Love Dem”

Morachi, “Marry Me”

Volcano, “Live Zouglou”

Awilo Longomba, “Manon”

DJ Magistral, “Instrumental”

Agev Munsen, “Gotta Get With You” f. Cassio Ware

Professor, “Baby”

Old Money, “Mamaseh” (Instrumental)

Supersonic Crew [Devin; Melo], “Untitled”

Mito, “Sele Mama Sele” ft Rei Anaconda

Lucenzo, “Danza Kuduro” (Original) f. Don Omar

Cabo Snoop, “Foi de Brincadeira” f. Mwana Po & Maskarado

Zito Silva, “Vamos Brincar”

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Photo by KOLA SULAIMON/AFP via Getty Image

#EndSARS: 1 Year Later And It's Business As Usual For The Nigerian Government

Thousands filled the streets of Nigeria to remember those slain in The #LekkiTollGateMassacre...while the government insists it didn't happen.

This week marks 1 year since Nigerians began protests against police brutality and demanded an end to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). The #EndSARS protests took the world by storm as we witnessed Nigerian forces abuse, harass and murder those fighting for a free nation. Reports of illegal detention, profiling, extortion, and extrajudicial killings followed the special task force's existence, forcing the government to demolish the unit on October 11th, 2020. However, protestors remained angered and desperate to be heard. It wasn't until October 20th, when soldiers opened fire on demonstrators at Lekki tollgate in the country's capital, Lagos, that the protests came to a fatal end. More than 56 deaths from across the country were reported, while hundreds more were traumatized as the Nigerian government continued to rule by force. The incident sparked global outrage as the Nigerian army refused to acknowledge or admit to firing shots at unarmed protesters in the dead of night.

It's a year later, and nothing has changed.

Young Nigerians claim to still face unnecessary and violent interactions with the police and none of the demands towards systemic changes have been met. Fisayo Soyombo the founder of the Foundation for Investigative Journalism, told Al Jazeera, "Yes, there has not been any reform. Police brutality exists till today," while maintaining that his organization has reported "scores" of cases of police brutality over this past year.

During October 2020's protests, Nigerian authorities turned a blind eye and insisted that the youth-led movement was anti-government and intended to overthrow the administration of current President Muhammadu Buhari. During a press conference on Wednesday, in an attempt to discredit the protests, Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed hailed the Nigerian army and police forces for the role they played in the #EndSARS protests, going as far as to say that the Lekki Toll Massacre was a "phantom massacre with no bodies." These brazen claims came while protesters continued to gather in several major cities across the country. The minister even went on to shame CNN, Nigerian favorite DJ Switch as well as Amnesty International, for reporting deaths at Lekki. Mohammed pushed even further by saying, "The six soldiers and 37 policemen who died during the EndSARS protests are human beings with families, even though the human rights organizations and CNN simply ignored their deaths, choosing instead to trumpet a phantom massacre."

With the reports of abuse still coming out of the West African nation, an end to the struggle is not in sight. During Wednesday's protest, a journalist for the Daily Post was detained by Nigerian forces while covering the demonstrations.

According to the BBC, additional police units have been set up in the place of SARS, though some resurfacing SARS officers and allies claim to still be around.

Young Nigerians relied heavily on social media during the protests and returned this year to voice their opinions around the first anniversary of an experience that few will be lucky enough to forget.



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How CKay's 'Love Nwantiti' Became the World's Song

Nigerian singer and producer CKay talks to OkayAfrica about the rise of his international chart-topping single "Love Nwantiti," his genre-defying sound and the reasons behind this era of afrobeats dominance.