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African Vibrations

Play UpThe football fever is on with the World Cup finals round the corner. As is the tradition different countries have come up with their football anthems to cheer on their national teams. To quote Bob Marley “Football Is Music”. A claim playup.org have taken seriously by releasing An Alternative World Cup Album with 17 brand new football songs exclusively written and recorded for them. Africa is well represented with songs from Daara J, Ayo, Patrice, Badié, Waldemar Bastos, and Ghetto Blaster. With artists from other countries contributing songs to the project football is truely a global cultural phenomenon. Mp3 samples and a short biographies are provided so get listening. Welcome to my tenth African Music roundup.

Matt of Benn loxo du taccu keeps it football blogging live and direct from the media center at the World Cup in Berlin. He talks about the War Child “Help” albums and their importance:

Help: a day in the life“10 years later the Help compilations are still great and still raising money for a good cause. Originally Help was brought-out by War Child to raise money for war-town Bosnia-Herzegovina. It’s amazing that the Bosnia conflict was only 10 years ago, especially when you consider that some of the countries involved are now vying for EU membership.”

Matt goes on to mention Tinariwen, a Tuareg band featured in the latest album, Help: a day in the life, and provides an mp3. He will be dropping posts on African teams in the World Cup so look out for that.

Generation Nubia answers requests to post pictures of 2Face Idibia, winner of Best African Act at the MTV Music Awards 2005.

2Face Idibia“This are pictures from the Mtv music awards last year so why are we posting them,two reasons actually :We didnt see to many full lenght decent pictures of him at the event and secondly this is probablly the only picture that shows him with his ‘baby mama’..so this is one for the history books.”

Generation Nubian also blogs about the recent black eyed peas tour of South Africa to support their aid foundation. Pictures of the Peas and Nelson Mandela are also posted.

Steve Ntwiga Mugiri links mp3s from the artists Les Wanyika and Orchestra Les Mangelepa. Really good songs worth checking out. He also provides links to other artists and musical sites. For the soccer mad he's dropped a seriously cool link to Nike's latest Joga Bonito (portugese for “play it beautifully”) video:

Joga Bonita“To the soccer mad among you: Adrain, Mental, Sokari et. al.The world longest soccer video at Nike Soccer’s Joga Bonito. Very bandwidth intensive so avoid the link if you are on dial up. 2 BTW’s, first, does anyone know what that serious background music is? Next, Mental, a google ad came up on your site when I was checking out your soccer posts: Check it out all the way at the bottom: find lasting peace in Jesus no matter who wins. Very appropriate in my humble opinion.”

The first “BTW” i'm also curious about as the video soundtrack is heavy, heavy, heavy. The second “BTW” relates to something very funny but you'ld have to figure for yourself. Hint: Jesus and the World Cup. Google ads eh?

Hans Riemer of Rock the Vote blog talks about the role of rap in West African politics focussing on Senegal:

Daara J“Rap has made inroads into a country renowned as one of the centers of West Africa's vibrant music scene, where the Mbalax style of dance music derived from traditional beats and popularized by N'Dour is a favorite genre. In the early '90s, bands like Daara J and Positive Black Soul recorded hip-hop albums in Wolof, the most widely spoken African language in the former French colony, where many unemployed youth take to rap with dreams of hitting the big time.”

Hans goes on to explain:

“Quickly becoming the voice of a generation eager for jobs and education but frustrated by corruption, inefficiency and a lack of opportunities, they built up a loyal following.”

He reflects on a time hip hop and rap in the US had a strong political undertone and wishes for a revival.

sucka for life blogs about the Nigerian born, neo-soul guitarist Keziah Jones:

Keziah Jones“I first checked for Keziah Jones in Paris at this spot named Le Triptique. The acoustic soul underground (if you will) there was holding a party for him. Celia from Les Nubians who is a fan of his dragged me there making it mandatory that I check him. While there, he made it known he had checked me a couple of years back in London at the Jazz Cafe with BFE.”

sucka for life puts up a clip from a New York show. For those interested in listening to his music check out this radio.blog link. This guy is incredible.

Morgan in Africa living in Rwanda talks about Congolese music:

“… due to my proximity to Congo, radio stations are dominated by Congolese news and music. Congolese music is variant, but it’s always fast and lively. Some types place more emphasis on traditional instruments, but the types of songs that are most popular on the big radio stations are called “salsa,” “rumba,” and “cha-cha”; in other words, it’s Latin American-style music, but sung in Lingala or Swahili. After a conversation with some colleagues today, I discovered that they thought that this music was uniquely Congolese!”

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