Video

William Onyeabor 'Atomic Bomb' Animated Short

Luaka Bop and Noisey teamed up to deliver the William Onyeabor 'Atomic Bomb' animated short from Spanish filmmaker Nicolai Troshinsky.


Just when we thought Onyeabor-mania was reaching the roof, the first official video off Who Is William Onyeabor? has proven the non-existence of said roof. Luaka Bop partnered with Noisey to commission Russian-born/Spanish animated illustrator/filmmaker Nicolai Troshinsky to turn standout "Atomic Bomb," and its not so subtle Cold War allusions, into a 1970s spy thriller. Troshinsky's animated psychedelia draw inspiration from the multiple whispers surrounding the life of Nigerian mystery-man William Onyeabor, as well as the animated Russian film series Styled Robbery. Watch the visual holy whaaat below and stay tuned for more from Luaka Bop in 2014– who promise an Onyeabor short film documentary, another music vid collab, and a series of live shows in the coming months. The complete smooth and good musing Who Is William Onyeabor? is now available to watch in its entirety via animated videos on youtube. Go get 'em here!

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Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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