‘Photosentences’ – Mutombo da Poet

mutombo da poetPercy Osei Appiah alias Mutombo Da Poet protests, jokes, sings, draws pictures with his words, talks about politics, love, Accra, trotros and ensures us that things will ‘Get Better‘. The young poet is a popular artist in the Ghanaian spoken word scene, who has began to do international shows. In 2012, he released his debut LP ‘Photosentences‘, packed with inspiring pieces of spoken word/ poetry.

In the angry ‘Parade‘, an open letter to all Ghanaians, he airs his frustration about Ghanaians’ politicians and shows his sympathies for the anti-governmental Occupy Flagstaff House movement. It is nice to see that the young poet adds melody to his spoken word:  In his sweet and melodious piece about love – called Love.The Most Confusing Thing I Had To Explain. Never Doing It Again… Chale‘ – he proofs his singing qualities and also the piece ‘SociallyYou‘ is embedded in jazzy Hip Hop beats. In ‘Ten Regions‘ he takes us through a audio-tour through Ghana and his hopeful ‘Get Better‘ reminds us to see the positive things in life.

Listen below to some selected tracks from his soundcloud and his LP ‘Photosentences‘ via bandcamp, where you can get the album for a sum of your choice.

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‘Feels So Good’ & ‘You Make My Heart Go’ – Maleh

maleh you make my heart go2Lesotho-born, South African-based songstress Maleh (alias Malehloka Hlalele) has won our attention after her excellent debut LP ‘Stepchild‘ with the amazing jazzy tune ‘Chimsoro‘, picked by JUSI I LOVE as one of the Best 20 songs in 2013 from Africa. In December last year she dropped her new album called ‘You Make My Heart Go‘, which led to nominations for the popular South African Music Awards: Best Female Artist of the Year & Best African Adult Album.

Listen to two soulful tunes from the album ‘Feel So Good‘ and ‘You Make My Heart Go‘. For the latter one she even dropped a video recently.

  Maleh  *-*  ‘You Make My Heart Go

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‘Matatya’ – Monoswezi

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matatya6Mark the date in your calendar. On the 26th of May Monoswezi (‘Ndinewe‘) will release their sophomore album ‘Monoswezi Yanga‘ via Riverboat/ World Music Network. The Scandinavian/African ensemble rose to popularity within a few weeks after the release of their debut album ‘The Village‘, which reached #2 on JUSI I LOVE’s list for 10 Best albums in 2013. The name of the band consists of the words ‘Mono‘ (Greek = ‘one’) and ‘Swezi‘ (native language in Southern Africa = ‘world’). Just as the name reflects different backgrounds, their sound continues to melt together voices and instruments, ‘traditionally’ rooted in specific places and put together in new places – for new purposes.

The video for the wonderful track ‘Matatya‘ was directed in Malaysia by Afiq Zulkefli. The song starts slowly and at some point the warm and gentle voice of Hope Masike (‘Huyai Tinamate‘) picks us up and takes us to a tour to the sound of Monoswezi.

  Monoswezi  *-*  ‘Matatya

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‘Malukayi’ & ‘Kala’ – Mbongwana Star

Mbongwana StarHere comes a new band from Kinshasa (DRC) with a revolutionary sound that makes the term ‘genre’ obsolete. The Mbongwana Star (Mbongwana means ‘Change’ in Lingala) fuse Funk, Rock and Congolese sounds not minding any musical borders or limits. Their first released track ‘Malukayi‘ – which feautres Konono No.1 –  is an ever vibrating melange of electronic melodies, drum beats, guitar riffs and Lingala chants.

The b&w-video for the tune paced tune ‘Kala‘, shot on Kinshasa’s streets, is an excellent visualization of Mbongwana Star’s sound. The tune surprises with an incredible speed and continuous changes.

You can purchase the single ‘Malukayi‘ via World Circuit. Their debut album ‘1.000.000 C’est quoi?’ will be released this coming May and they will tour in the Netherlands, Belgium and France in April/ May (Tour dates).

Mbongwana Star  *-*  ‘Kala

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‘Palm Wine Beats’ – Lo-Fi Odysseys

lo-fi odysseys2Palm Wine Beats is a ingenious series by UK-based DJ/ sound engineer Lo-Fi Odysseys alias Daniel Oduntan, which takes you to Nigeria’s past. If you want to get an introduction into Nigeria’s political/ social/ musical history, stop reading that history book and take an audio tour via the Palm Wine Beats. What Lo-Fi Odysseys offers to us here is nothing less than an excellent attempt to mash Nigeria’s political challenges, its cuisine, the humour of the people and outer- and intro-perspectives of this great country. Besides tunes of Nigeria’s rich music culture, you hear snippets of interviews and parts of documentaries.

In an e-mail to Okayafrica, Daniel Oduntan explained the motivation behind the creative Series: “[I] Just wanted to crate dig my heritage like a hip-hop DJ would dig for jazz and soul samples and present it in a way that others could access, relate to and find fun… Palm Wine BEATS is my tiny attempt, a small scratch an introduction. VOL 1 touches on the popular vintage sounds of Nigeria, it’s people, humour and problems that mirror todays. VOL 2 looks at the formation of Nigeria by the British, The Biafra War, Nigeria’s early relations with America, and the many problems and painful memory’s that have arose from this time.”

Download the two volumes for free here: Volume 1 & Volume 2.

Playlist – Volume 1:

1. Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey – Baba Loran Mi Wa [lo-fi odysseys re-touch]
2. Femi Temowo – Back To My Guitar Roots TED Talk
3. Harry Whitaker – Together
4. Roy Ayes – Black Family [lo-fi odysseys re-touch] + C.A.C.E TV
5. Seyi Law – Native Tongue + Jay-U Experience – Some More ‘Enough Is Enough’
6. Soki Ohale’s Uzzi – Bisi’s Beat ‘Chicken Fled’
7. Fela – Music Is The Weapon {blend} Minnie Riperton – Minnie’s Lament
8. Music Is The Weapon Documentary [Jean-Jacques Flori, Stephane Tchalgadjieff]
9. Sir Shina Peters – Omo Mbo aka Shinamania Part 2 ‘Shinamania’
10. Juju Music Documentary [Jacques Holender] + I.K. Dairo & His Blue Spots Band jam clip
11. Sunny Ade & His African Beats – Ibanuje Mo Niwon ‘Sunny Ade & His African Beats 1973 – Vol 9′

Playlist – Volume 2:

1. Fela Kuti interview – Teacher Don’t Teach Me Nonsense documentary by Dennis Marks
2. Roy Ayes – Africa, Center Of The World ‘Africa, Center Of The World’
3. The Lijadu Sisters – Orere-Elejigbo ‘Horizon Unlimited’
4. BattaBox.com – Should Nigeria Divide? {blend} Chief Commander Ebenezer Obey – Ambition [lo-fi odysseys retouch]
5. Fela – Music Is The Weapon Documentary {blend} Sylvia St. James – Ghetto Lament
6. William Onyeabor – Better Change Your Mind ‘Atomic Bomb’
7. A-dots Apprentice : You Remaining Goats clip
8. Emperor Pick Peters and His Seidormatic System – Yewa Lati Owuro ‘Omo Ode De’
9. Genocide in Biafra 1967-1970 [Sliver Productions France]
10. Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Official Visit to USA July 1961 [U.S.I.S United States Information Service]
11. Biafra (A) – Film footage 902178 Life and activity in the Republic of Biafra
12. The Apostles – Ndi Nkwa ‘Black Is Beautiful’
13. Blackman Akeeb Kareem – Sad Memory ‘Tomorrow’
14. LO-FI ODYSSEYS – Untitled Beat {blend} Jide Olanrewaju – Politics of the first Nigerian coup
15. The Funkees – Slipping Into Darkness [lo-fi odysseys retouch] {blend} Rudolf Okonkwo and Nnamdi Kanu interview [Sahara TV]
16. Lenny White & Don Blackman – Nocturne {blend} Yomi ‘GREEdS’ Sode – What It Means [poem]
17. Akintayo Adetokunbo – Nigerian Women {blend} Anita Baker – Sweet Love + The Apostles – My Sweet Girl [lo-fi odysseys re-touch]
18. Ben The Beautiful : stuff african parents say
19. Rufus Adeagbo – Nigerian Leaders
20. BattaBox.com – The Nigerian Dancing Barber Shop in London
21. The Elcados – Chokoi & Oreje ‘This World is Full of Injustice’
22. The Lijadu Sisters – Come On Home {blend} Nigeria Pop Idol – Fela audition
23. Fela – Music Is The Weapon Documentary
24. Alhaja Queen Salawa Abeni and her Waka Moderniser – Gentle Lady [lo-fi odysseys re-touch]
25. PBS News Hour/Channel 4 News – Has Nigeria abandoned #BringBackOurGirls?

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