Today in #TheLagosReview

#RoundAboutTown With Henri Yire

Shifting gears, rubber grinding against the resisting road, we are finally on the move.

The Lagos event ecosystem is finally back to full blast.

Leading premium brand, Moet leads the charge with an iconic event tagged Moet Film Gala featuring renowned Nollywood heavyweights like Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, Kate Henshaw, Mawuli Gavor and many others in a VIP-inspired six-course dinner surrounded by an unending flow of Moet and Chandon.


Enough said about that event, after all its a strictly by invitation thingy and we can only experience it from the outside.

Moving on.

If Godly vibes is your thing, you can check out a new movie called SIMS (standing in Maggie’s shoes) at This Present House Film Night tomorrow, in the Lekki Phase 1 area.

Here are some other exciting events that you can partake of this weekend.

Angelique Kidjo’s Meeting with Burna Boy is a pleasure to watch.

When two living legends meet, we exect nothing less than good vibes and that was exactly the case when Angelique Kidjo met with Burna Boy and his mom, Bose Ogulu. In the video Burna Boy posted on his IG stories, the 59-year-old Kidjo was excitedly gisting with Burna and his mom and judging from the expression on their faces, they are as star-struck as we are.

Angelique Kidjo beat Burna Boy in the just concluded Grammy awards to win the award for the World Music album and she magnanimously dedicated her award to Burna Boy, referring to him as one of the new generation of African artists that will take the world by storm.

Senegalese rappers to present Journal Rappé at Munich Biennale 2020

A partnership between the Music In Africa Foundation, Siemens Stiftung and Goethe-Institut will make it possible for Senegalese rappers Keyti and Xuman to present Journal Rappé at the Munich Biennale in Germany this May.

Senegalese rappers Keyti and Xuman will present Journal Rappé in Germany this May.
Keyti and Xuman are well known in Francophone West Africa for the Journal Rappé news programme, which relays often complex social, economic and political information through the hip hop idiom.

At the Munich Biennale, the duo will present 10 daily live episodes of Journal Rappé at Studio Muffatwerk from 16 to 25 May. A final performance will take place at the Ampere nightclub on 29 May.

The content to be presented will be centred on the youth, politics, environmental issues and development in Africa through the show’s satirical and sometimes irreverent formula.

“The complete 10 episodes will take the audience through the journey of Africa from post-independence to the subject of Afrofuturism,” Keyti told Music In Africa. “What we want is to change Africa’s narrative when it comes to how the rest of the world sees the continent. We want to paint a picture of the Africa we know. We will not sugar-coat anything, it will be the reality we experience. Africa has its difficulties but Africa also has its promises of great things to come.”

Xuman said: “For me it is imperative to show the diversity of Africa. When you talk about African music in the diaspora, hip hop is not very popular. For the first time we will show how creative African hip hop is.”

Journal Rappé was launched in 2013 and since then the programme’s concept has been adopted in Uganda, Mauritania, Togo, Ivory Coast, Madagascar, Mali, Cameroon, Jamaica and Vietnam.

“We’ve made great impact both locally and internationally,” Keyti said. “Local artists now understand that they need to take risks to make their art visible. We chose to use rap and music to reach a new audience, and it gave us the exposure we did not have as solo artists in Senegal and all over the world.

“The other impact is that the programme has been replicated in other countries, primarily where the government controls the media. Therefore, the Internet becomes an alternative platform to address education, health and other issues Africa is concerned with.”

Keyti says Journal Rappé’s primary goal is to actively encourage young people to engage in politics, criticise decisions in which they have little or no say and use creativity to shape the future.

“The African youth is changing the narrative of Africa. For example, Kenya is becoming one of the technological hubs in the world, and I am confident that it will keep growing. Young people are doing that. In Nigeria, the creative industry in cinema is huge and young people are driving it. There are so many examples. So I don’t think things can change on the continent without the youth,” Keyti said.

Text courtesy

Fakoly embraces West African roots through music

Tiken Jah Fakoly, born Doumbia Moussa, is an internationally renowned Ivorian reggae singer from Odienné, a town in the northwestern region of the Ivory Coast. Heavily inspired by Alpha Blondy, another Ivorian reggae star from the 1980s, Fakoly began his musical career at the age of 18, secretly composing songs that he hid from his strict Muslim family. By the late ’90s, he released a string of albums and was touring regularly around his home country. However, it wasn’t until his first internationally distributed album, “Françafrique,” that he gained a wide following throughout Africa and the rest of the world. Merely one year after the album’s release, he was exiled from the Ivory Coast for his controversial political music and he currently lives in Bamako, Mali. Today, he performs around the world and has become one of the most popular and respected modern musicians to come from the Ivory Coast.

“Françafrique,” released in 2002, is a masterpiece of musical fusion. Sung primarily in French and Dioula, his native language, the album effortlessly blends Jamaican roots reggae with traditional styles from West Africa. In addition, Fakoly incorporates a number of traditional instruments into his music, such as the ngoni, a stringed instrument from Mali, as well as the balafon, a gourd-resonated xylophone closely associated with Guinean Mandinka culture. These influences combine to create a sound that is highly international, while simultaneously emphasizing Fakoly’s roots in West African music.

The name of this album refers to France’s sphere of influence over its former colonies, as well as the policies of French control in Africa that have had a great impact on the continent in the years since decolonization. It is social subjects like these that Fakoly addresses in his songs. In the title track, he opens with the call to “réveillez-vous,” commanding the world to wake up to the atrocities committed in West Africa. He sings of how France and the United States “sell us weapons” and “plunder our wealth,” while these countries still “say they are surprised to see Africa still at war.” Fakoly does not mince words when it comes to France’s policies in Africa, proclaiming later in the song that “they burned the Congo, inflamed Angola and ruined Gabon.” The song’s catchy melody and punchy brass riffs make “Françafrique” a rousing anti-imperialist anthem, a song that is not afraid to tell the honest story about an often neglected side of global history.

Fakoly continues his political critique on another highlight of the album, “Y’en a marre,” featuring Martinican reggae singer Yaniss Odua. This song addresses topics including the assassination of journalists in the Ivory Coast and continued military rule. It is important to note that Fakoly was born into the griot caste, an age-old hereditary tradition of musicians responsible for passing down oral history through music. Through this album, Fakoly channels reggae’s tendency to speak out against social injustice while also telling the history of his country in the griot tradition. Indeed, “Y’en a marre” delves into the historical context for the contemporary issues facing West Africa. He sings how “after the abolition of slavery, they created colonization,” going on to tell how Africa is currently exploited through globalization that is ultimately rooted in this same colonial system.

Although much of Fakoly’s music addresses incredibly painful subjects, he maintains that his music tells a story of hope. He shared in a 2016 interview in Afropop Worldwide that his “principal message is to tell everyone that Africa is the continent of the future, and that us Africans should be proud because the future is ours.” His music examines the past while looking towards the future and shows how beautiful styles of music from across the world can organically come together to form something brilliant and unique. It shows how reggae music can transcend national borders and become a global medium for expressing the social condition of our modern world, while envisioning a brighter and more equitable tomorrow. I believe we can all learn more from exploring this type of music.

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SA music legends to perform at Carnival City

South African musicians Sipho ‘Hotstix’ Mabuse, Ringo Madlingozi and Tshepo Tshola will perform at the A Night With Legends concerts at the Big Top Arena at Carnival City in Johannesburg on 1 February.

A Night With Legends will feature some of South Africa’s most loved musicians.
The event, which is presented by Slice Events Management, aims to celebrate some of the biggest hits in South African history.

With careers spanning decades, the artists will perform hits such as Hotstix’s ‘Burn Out’, Tshola’s ‘Akubutle’ and Madlingozi’s ‘Nkqo Nkqo’, among many others.

The show will also include a special tribute by musician Mandla Ntlak.

“This is not only a nostalgic night of music with South African music legends but it’s also a night of celebration,” Slice Events Management’s Masilo Makgato said.

“We’re celebrating the legends while they are still here to share their talent with us, while paying homage to the journey their music has taken us on through the years.”

Carnival City marketing manager Michelle Smith said the venue was eager to host the South African legends.

“We are delighted to have these exceptional artists collaborating on our stage in February,” she said. “A Night with Legends is a celebration of the tremendous musical talent that exists in South Africa.”

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Celebrating black history with “Hair Love” and other picture books.

Cherry has been nominated for an Oscar for a movie short he created for the book.
CHILDREN’S BOOKS: “Hair Love” by Matthew Cherry and illustrated by Vashti Harrison. Cherry has been nominated for an Oscar for a movie short he created for the book.
Photo: Penguin Random House
When the seven-minute animated short film “Hair Love” debuted last fall, Houston resident Don Payne couldn’t stop watching it.

By the fifth time, he was nearly in tears. The movie, written, produced and directed by Matthew Cherry, spotlights the relationship between an African American father, Stephen, and his daughter, Zuri, and her hair. It’s based on Cherry’s bestselling children’s picture book, “Hair Love” (Kokila, $17.99), with New York Times bestselling illustrator Vashti Harrison.

The film, which features actress Issa Rae, is nominated for an Oscar for best animated short film.

Black dads are finally getting recognized in a positive way for being great “girl dads” and doing their hair, said Payne, who works in telecommunications and has two grown daughters and a 12-year-old, Trinity. Payne has been styling Trinity’s hair since she was a baby; he found the Brown Girls Hair blog and YouTube channel to help him navigate the plethora of hair products and styles.

“There’s this stereotype of what it is to be a man and what men do and don’t do, but when you see what it means to your daughter or your wife when you do their hair, it makes it all worthwhile,” he said.

Payne is now a pro, in a way, with a collection of product and hair accessories ready for any style.

“I think Trinity enjoys it. She even thought all dads did their daughters’ hair,” he said.

On “CBS Morning News,” author Cherry said he hopes his book and movie will help normalize hair for black people, citing Houston high school senior DeAndre Arnold, who was banned from his own graduation because of his long locks.

“It’s crazy that laws have to be passed to make it illegal to discriminate against black people because of their hair in the workplace,” Cherry said. Or in the classroom.

In honor of Black History Month, here are more uplifting picture books for young readers:

‘The Undefeated’
By Kwame Alexander and illustrated by Kadir Nelson

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, ages 6-9, 40 pages


“The Undefeated” is Kwame Alexander’s beautiful poetic tribute to African American history and life in the United States. With award-winning illustrator Kadir Nelson, the book highlights the trauma of slavery, the fire of the civic rights movement and showcases heroes who have led the way. The book is a 2020 Caldecott Medal Winner, received the 2020 Coretta Scott King Illustrator award and a Newbery honor.

By Lupita Nyong’o and illustrated by Vashti Harrison

Simon & Schuster, ages 4-8, 48 pages


Academy Award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o has talked publicly about overcoming society’s negative feelings about her dark skin. Now, she’s made it the theme of her first children’s book. Sulwe’s skin is the color of midnight, and she’s the darkest one in her family. But she wants more than anything to be bright. The book takes Sulwe on a magical journey to show her that true beauty comes from within. The book is a New York Times bestseller and won the Coretta Scott King Illustrator award for Vashti Harrison’s vivid artwork.

‘Parker Looks Up’
By Parker Curry and Jessica Curry and illustrated by Brittany Jackson

Aladdin, ages 4-8, 40 pages


Remember the cute little girl, Parker Curry, who captured the world’s attention when she was photographed staring in awe at first lady Michelle Obama’s portrait as it hung in the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery? Parker and her mother, Jessica Curry, have turned the viral image into a picture book that tells the story of a young girl and her family, whose trip to a museum becomes a life-changing experience.

‘The Power of Her Pen: The Story of Groundbreaking Journalist Ethel L. Payne’
By Lesa Cline-Ransome and illustrated by John Parra

Aladdin, ages 7-10, 48 pages


This book tells the inspiring story of Ethel Payne, a groundbreaking African American journalist known as the “First Lady of the Black Press.” A native of Chicago, Payne began writing letters to newspapers about black issues and politics during World War II and then went to work for the Chicago Defender, which sent her to Washington, D.C. She was one of only three black journalists with a White House press pass and covered six presidents. Renowned author Lesa Cline-Ransome and celebrated illustrator John Parra team up on this important story in history.

Text courtesy Houston

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