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Video: Walshy Fire On Bridging African & Caribbean Sounds In 'ABENG'

In 'Moments With: Walshy Fire,' we sit down with Walshy Fire to talk about the many inspirations behind ABENG, Kenya's role in the process, the label of "afrobeats," and pushing positive music.

Walshy Fire—producer, DJ and member of Major Lazer—recently released his latest record, ABENG.

Throughout its 11 songs, the new album aims to be a conversation between the Caribbean and Africa, featuring some of the biggest names across the dancehall and afro-fusion scenes like Mr Eazi, Kranium, Ice Prince, Demarco, Wizkid, Runtown and many more.

We sat down with Walshy Fire to talk about the many inspirations behind ABENG and its title, Kenya's role in the process, the label of "afrobeats," and pushing positive music.

Watch below.


Moments With: Walshy Fire youtu.be

Moments With is a cross-brand series between Okayplayer and OkayAfrica, bringing viewers in for an intimate moment with some of the most iconic names and people to watch in entertainment.

Credits

Producers | Ivie Ani & Greg Poole

Editors | Israel Nava

Cinematographer | Sam Henriques

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ATLANTA, GA - OCTOBER 5: Sarkodie speaks onstage at the BET Hip Hop Awards 2019 at Cobb Energy Center on October 5, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

Sarkodie Won 'Best International Flow' at the 2019 BET Hip Hop Awards

The Ghanaian rapper is the first-ever winner of the newly created category.

Ghanaian rapper Sarkodie had a memorable night at the BET Hip Hop Awards this past weekend, which saw some of the biggest names in rap music gather in Atlanta for a jam-packed show.

The rapper beat out the likes of Falz the Bahd Guy, Ghetts and Little Simz, Nasty C and Tory Lanez to take home the award for the newly created 'Best International Flow' category.

The artist dedicated the award to his daughter, Titi and used his acceptance speech to urge audience members to take a trip to Ghana during the year of return. "I think Africa has always had it and it is about that time. This year is the Year of Return and I would urge each and every one of you here to take a trip back home," said the artist. He was presented the award by Ugandan Get Out star, Daniel Kaluuya.

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Wizkid "Joro"

Wizkid Drops New Single 'Joro'

Listen to the new Northboi-produced track and watch its accompanying music video.

Wizkid returns today on Nigerian Independence Day with the drop of a new single, "Joro." The new track sees the Nigerian superstar delivering his signature vocals over a head-nodding mid-tempo beat produced by Northboi.

The accompanying music video follows Wizkid and a companion as they dance across candle-lit rooms, hair salons and the streets of Lagos. It features actress/dancer Georgia Curtis.

"Joro" premiered on Ebro's Apple Music Beats 1 radio show. It follows the recent release of Starboy's first solo single of 2019, "Ghetto Love."

Earlier this year, Wizkid's kept busy with big features including ncluding "Brown Skin Girl" with Beyoncé on Lion King: The Gift, "I like" with Kojo Funds and "Dis Love" with DJ Spinall and Tiwa Savage,

Watch the new music video for "Joro" below.

For more of the latest afrobeats hits, follow our Afrobeats Party playlist on Spotify and Apple Music.

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Cellou Binani/Getty Images

Several People Have Been Killed During Protests in Guinea

Guineans are protesting against changes to the constitution which will allow President Alpha Conde to run for a third term.

At least five people have died during protests in Guinea's Conakry and Mamou after police opened fire on them, according to Aljazeera. The protests come just after President Alpha Conde instructed his government to look into drafting a new constitution that will allow him to remain in power past the permissible two terms. Conde's second five-year term will come to an end next year but as is the unfortunate case with many African leaders, the 81-year-old is intent on running for office yet again.

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Photo by Hamish Brown

In Conversation: Lemn Sissay On His New Book About Re-claiming the Ethiopian Heritage Stolen From Him by England’s Foster Care System

In 'My Name Is Why,' the 2019 PEN Pinter award winner passionately advocates for children in the institutional care system, and in turn tells a unique story of identity and the power in discovering one's heritage.

It took the author Lemn Sissay almost two decades to learn his real name. As an Ethiopian child growing up in England's care system, his cultural identity was systematically stripped from him at an early age. "For the first 18 years of my life I thought that my name was Norman," Sissay tells OkayAfrica. "I didn't meet a person of color until I was 10 years of age. I didn't know a person of color until I was 16. I didn't know I was Ethiopian until I was 16 years of age. They stole the memory of me from me. That is a land grab, you know? That is post-colonial, hallucinatory madness."

Sissay was not alone in this experience. As he notes in his powerful new memoir My Name Is Why, during the 1960s, tens of thousands of children in the UK were taken from their parents under dubious circumstances and put up for adoption. Sometimes, these placements were a matter of need, but other times, as was the case with Sissay, it was a result of the system preying on vulnerable parents. His case records, which he obtained in 2015 after a hardfought 30 year campaign, show that his mother was a victim of child "harvesting," in which young, single women were often forced into giving their children up for adoption before being sent back to their native countries. She tried to regain custody of young Sissay, but was unsuccessful.

Whether they end up in the foster system out of need or by mistake, Sissay says that most institutionalized children face the same fate of abuse under an inadequate and mismanaged system that fails to recognize their full humanity. For black children who are sent to white homes, it often means detachment from a culturally-sensitive environment. "There are too many brilliant people that I know who have been adopted by white parents for me to say that it just doesn't work," says Sissay. "But the problem is the amount of children that it doesn't work for."

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