Blitz the Ambassador’s Afropolitan Dreams Block Party

May 7, 2013 § 1 Comment

Blitz the Ambassador goes airborne during his performance in Brooklyn, NY

Blitz the Ambassador goes airborne during his performance in Brooklyn, NY

What could beat a free block party in Brooklyn, New York thrown by Blitz the Ambassador and featuring French duo Les Nubians, with a film screening of the Sundance hit Restless City, a picnic, and a live DJ on a May weekend afternoon? Not much else, we figured; tack on a chance to nab an interview with Blitz, and off we went! Boy was it worth it. The Ghanaian born hip hop artist has been called the future of African music, and together with his live band he KILLED it at Fulton Park last Saturday May 4th. His brand of music is infused with Afrobeat and highlife influences, and his live performance in itself is just sheer irrepressible energy. The rest of his band seemed like they were ready to rip off the suits they « Read the rest of this entry »

“Felabration!” Birthday Celebration for Fela in DC

November 2, 2010 § 2 Comments

Something to check out if you: 1. Live in the DC area, 2. Love Afrobeat music and, 3. Have always wanted to get your face painted: “Afrobeat 4 ya Soul,” presented by Lunchbox Theory every month! Last week, in honor of Nigerian Afrobeat superstar Fela Kuti‘s October birthday, it was a “Felabration” at Bossa Bistro in Adams Morgan. (I’m still mad I missed September’s event, because Ghanaian hip hop star Blitz the Ambassador reportedly rocked the joint at Liv Nightclub at 11th and U Street!)
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Rage Against the Nigerian Machine

September 18, 2010 § Leave a comment

There was a moment of silence held in his memory at the Crossroads Nightclub in Maryland, I remember, on the day it was announced that Fela had passed away. I remembered all I had heard about his struggles with the Nigerian Government, his imprisonment, the music, and of course, the revolutionary lyrics.

Zombie Album Cover

His song “Zombie” (1976) makes a mockery of the Nigerian military and police. Fela’s volatile relationship with the Nigerian authorities came to a head in 1977 when his Kalakuta Republic was stormed by soldiers and burned to the ground. Fela’s mother was thrown from a window by soldiers and she went into coma from which she never recovered, dying about eight weeks later. (His song “Sorrow, Tears and Blood” is about that horrendous experience.) Many thought the music he pioneered – Afrobeat – would fade out. Well, Afrobeat lovers, rejoice! Brand new reissues of Fela’s music have been released this past week by Knitting Factory Records. They have announced a Digital Package with immediate downloads of 11 of his releases between 1976 and 1980. Called the Zombie Batch, it is the third reissue so far of their periodic releases of the Nigerian musician’s work. I found this out on Boing Boing, (with Alt Sounds and Lime Wire Blog also reporting it) and the blog includes a free download of the classic Fela hit after which the reissue is named – Zombie. You can check out the Fela page on Knitting Factory Records here to buy the digital downloads. There is also a CD + Digital Download Package, and a Deluxe Package. Titles on the set include the aforementioned “Zombie,” “Sorrow Tears and Blood,” “Music of Many Colors” (with Roy Ayers), and “Shuffering and Shmiling.” The next group of reissues are scheduled for later this year. Bless…

Afrofusion

August 25, 2010 § Leave a comment

Welcome, cool people!! In the Afrofusion Lounge, here’s what you’re going to find: The latest info on tours by the hottest African and West Indian musicians. The most current trends in African fashion, from the most progressive designers on the continent and in the Diaspora. Cutting edge developments in art from Africa’s most promising and established artists. The most intriguing cultural and social trends amongst Africans in the Diaspora and on the Continent. Exciting news in the world of African and Caribbean sports and entertainment. All this will also be part of Afro Fusion TV, a new web television series whose episodes will be streamed on this blog. So stay tuned, we’re going to roll it all out… soon!

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