December 28, 2010 § 3 Comments
Roots reggae band Morgan Heritage is the latest in a long list of artists from the Diaspora to play concerts in Africa this year, and for reggae fans in Sierra Leone their performance will cap a 2010 that’s been quite a treat! First it was Akon’s concert earlier in the year. Then superstar Jimmy Cliff shuttled in to do the ECOWAS Peace Pageant; he had barely said “see ya” when Beenie Man hit the stage as part of his own multi-nation tour. And now it seems that fans could not even wait for Morgan Heritage’s scheduled main event at the National Stadium on December 28; a special request was made of them to perform a private show at the « Read the rest of this entry »
December 24, 2010 § 5 Comments
A 16th century Benin mask, whose image was famously used as the symbol of FESTAC ’77 (World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture) is about to be auctioned off at Sotheby’s in London – unless a group of determined Africans can stop it. Efforts have been ongoing for years to have the mask, which is said to represent the face of Queen Idia, the first Queen mother of Benin, be returned along with hundreds of other priceless artifacts looted from the Kingdom of Benin in 1897 during a “Punitive” invasion by the British. But what galls many African art historians now is that the descendants of Lt. Col. Sir Henry Gallwey (later changed to Galway) are putting the mask, together with 5 other precious Benin art works, up for sale in February 2011 and hoping to get millions of pounds from them. Problem is, say historians, it’s stolen property.
December 21, 2010 § 5 Comments
It was an exciting fusion of African fashion and music Saturday night December 18, as BCBG Productions put on a great show for the African Diaspora at their 5th Anniversary party. It all went down at Cafe Asia in downtown Washington, DC, featuring hot young design duo Côté Minou and Zouk recording artist Kaysha. Côté Minou kicked off the party with 12 models showing off part of their winter collection, then Kaysha took the stage performing a few songs from his latest album “Works of Art,” as well as his popular hits like “On Dit Quoi.” Maryanne Mokoko and Stephanie Mouapi, the ladies behind Côté Minou, have « Read the rest of this entry »
December 18, 2010 § Leave a comment
The Fashionistas at Côté Minou are all set to bring you a dazzling showcase of African fashion tonight at Cafe Asia in downtown Washington, DC. It’s a show that celebrates the 5th anniversary of BCBG Productions, an event planning and promotions company that has brought Zouk/Kizomba star Kaysha over from France to perform at the show. Côté Minou was started in 2006 by two ladies from Cameroun, Stephanie Mouapi and Maryanne Mokoko, with the idea of establishing Africa’s place on the world’s fashion map. And they’ve grown steadily since, with several fashion shows and other events in the DC area that have made them a household name in African fashion. Kaysha is a French/Zairean musician whose latest album, “Works of Art” was just released this past week. Kaysha’s breakout hit, Bounce Baby, featured a sample of “Oulé” by Martinique super group Kassav‘ back in 1998. Since then he has branched out into producing, and has started his own record label, Sushiraw. Kaysha will be performing Saturday December 18 in Washington, DC at Cafe Asia, 1720 I Street, and next week will be in New York. For more details on the event, click here. An exciting night of African Fashion and music awaits! Bless…
December 15, 2010 § 5 Comments
Nikyatu Jusu has not even yet graduated with her Master of Fine Arts (MFA) from New York University’s Film School, but three of her films have already won multiple awards. Her thesis film Say Grace Before Drowning, whose screenplay had already captured a Spike Lee Scholarship, recently won her a $50,000 Panavision equipment grant at the Bronze Lens Film Festival in Atlanta. Her second year short, African Booty Scratcher, won an HBO award, and her latest « Read the rest of this entry »
December 11, 2010 § Leave a comment
Chris Blackwell, founder of the most successful indie label in music history, was at Govinda Gallery in Georgetown yesterday, signing copies of his new book Keep On Running: The Story of Island Records. But one of the most notable signatures he scribbled was not even on that big coffee table book. A copy of the Wailers’ Catch a Fire with the original LP (long play) cover was thrust in front of him by proud owner Cary Scott, who’d found it in near mint condition, stashed in the back of a record store in Washington, DC. Mr. Blackwell was suitably impressed; it is one of only 12 original copies left in the world, and in the best condition he’d ever seen one.
December 9, 2010 § 3 Comments