Month: April 2020

9 Results / Page 1 of 1



Kanda Bongo Man: The place of African music

In July this year, Kanda returned to perform at the 40th anniversary of the festival started by British artist Peter Gabriel. When a fresh-faced gap-toothed 18-year-old singer from Kinshasa called Kanda Bongo (later known as Kanda Bongo Man) arrived in France in 1979, there were few opportunities for musicians from Africa.   “When I arrived in Paris, African music was not popular in France and all the record companies, I […]

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How Hip-Hop Got Its Name

ip-hop — they were the first words on the genre’s first big hit, the Sugarhill Gang’s 1979 song, “Rapper’s Delight.” But at the time no one—not even the young kids who had invented the music, the dances, the rhymes, and the visual art of this burgeoning movement emerging from the Bronx—was calling it that. Hip-hop wasn’t hip-hop yet. That moment would come in September 1982, when a downtown reporter named […]

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The Unsolved Murders of Rap Kings Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G.

Was it an East vs. West gang war or is there more to the story? Two of the biggest rappers of their time died untimely deaths in eerily similar manners in back-to-back years 1996 and 1997. They were both shot to death in drive-by shootings and were both aged a mere 25 years at the time of their death.   The tragic losses were a culmination of one of the […]

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Inside Tupac’s Last Days

The rapper's professional and personal life was at an all-time high when he was gunned down in September 1996. On September 7, 1996, Tupac Shakur was shot in Las Vegas; he died six days later. In the last days before his death, Tupac's life included creating music, filming a movie, activism, romance, and making plans for a future away from Death Row Records. Tupac's acting career was thriving Though best […]

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Recreating America?: Why Most African Rappers Dont Sound `African`

Quincy Jones once said:   Ice keep doing what you are doing- man/Don’t give a damn those squares don’t understand/You let them tell you what to sing and what to write/Your whole career will be all over by tomorrow night!   -Ice T (Back on the Block 1989)   The mass media has ensured that the horrors of the Jewish Holocaust are deeply ingrained in our consciousness; however the equally […]

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Since 2007 The BET Hip-Hop Awards have been honoring the emcees, music, and artistry that keeps the culture we love moving forward and evolving. The ceremony’s rap freestyle series, “The Cypher”, highlights the lyrical ability, charisma, and stage presence of both hip-hop icons and emerging emcees in a traditional rap cypher setting.   Rappers have given some memorable performances throughout the years, with some artists making their mainstream debut in […]

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Gen Elly Tumwine`s Contribution Towards Uganda`s Art Industry

Uganda`s former Security Minister General Elly Tumwine passed away Thursday morning in Nairobi at the Aga Khan Hospital where he had been airlifted recently after suffering complications related to a cancerous condition. Tumwine, one of the heroes of the 1986 Luweero bush war that brought the current NRM government to power and died at the age of 68. His death has left many people lamenting including the Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who regarded […]

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Music As A New Age of Activism

In recent decades, musicians have figured prominently on Africa’s political stage. In our Uganda, musician Bobi Wine moved beyond protest singer and ventured into politics by entering parliament in 2017 and challenging long-term President Yoweri Museveni at the presidential polls in 2021. To push for social change, Wine created the People Power movement and built an alliance with fellow musicians. This article is not going to study Wine’s movement and […]

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The Unprecedented Journey: How Ugandan Rap Has Created Entrepreneurs

Hip-hop in Uganda was born in the early-1990s in impoverished areas of Kampala amongst rampant unemployment, drugs, and other social injustices. As such, it was an unlikely candidate to grow and permeate mainstream Ugandan society. When hip-hop began in Uganda, people outside Kampala didn’t understand it. There was no demand for the “bizarre talking records,” as radio stations by that time used to call them. If anything, mainstream music institutions […]

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