News Brief

Yasiin Bey Confirms His Retirement in a Live Stream From Cape Town

Yasiin Bey went on Facebook live today to announce his retirement in a feed from Cape Town.

Yasiin Bey went on Facebook live today to confirm his retirement in a feed from Cape Town.


"I'm retiring for real this year. This week was the 17th anniversary of Black On Both Sides being released," he says. "I'm grateful to have had the career that I've been able to enjoy, as I say to many people... my brother and sisters, thank you for spending your money and more importantly your time."

Yasiin also mentions that he has to cancel his upcoming European shows. But, although he can't make it over there, he has a solution: he'll be live streaming his concert for all paying ticket holders live from Cape Town.

In the live stream, Yasiin also mentioned that he'd be performing new material that he hasn't performed anywhere else live and will be taking seven requests every night.

He also mentions he has "one or two" films that he'll be in due to prior commitments.

"Apart from that, I'm moving on to other things. Still being creative. Definitely fashion, textiles and just art. Whatever I can create that's beautiful and useful," he says.

He also shouts out Jay Z and vows to give TIDAL exclusives on his new music. Then goes on to shout out friends and legends like Madlib, Tribe, Living Colour, Kanye West, and many many more.

"This is my retirement party year."

Music
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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