HHAP Episode 12: Burkinabe Rap Dialogue

This is episode 12 of the podcast, and the fourth and last in a series of episodes recorded live at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival in Hartford, Connecticut. The festival took place the 6th to the 9th of April, 2017. This episode features a conversation with Mathurin Soubéiga, who does booking and promotion at Shrine World Music Venue in New York. He is also the former Coordinator of the Waga Hip Hop Festival in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Soubéiga also runs the Burkina Rap Connection blog

The Waga Hip Hop Festival has a history of being an epicenter of West African, especially Francophone, hip hop. The festival had a strong reputation for promoting serious hip hop. In this conversation we discuss hip hop and Burkina Faso and the legacy of the Waga Festival.

In Ouagadougou, where the festival began and was held, the hip hop community has produced some serious & conscious hip hop artists. Smockey, one of the activists in the Le Balai Citoyen (Citizen’s Broom) movement that helped to overthrow Burkina Faso’s previous president, is also a pioneer in Burkinabe rap.

The intro and outdo song is “Insoumission” by Burkina emcee Smockey: https://youtu.be/e89IvPAq8Zc 

In 2011, Nomadic Wax released a 17 minute documentary titled Hip Hop Burkinabé, and it can be found on YouTube

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jf0OUz6LDEo%5D

In 2016, Aj Jazeera published an article on the involvement of the artists in the Le Balai Citoyen movement titled “The soundtrack to Burkina Faso’s revolution”

Text on hip hop in Burkina Faso include:

Marie-Soleil Frère and Pierre Englebert. “Briefing: Burkina Faso—the Fall of Blaise Compaoré” in African Affairs (2015).
Daniel Künzler and U Reuster-Jahn. “Mr. President”: musical open letters as political commentary in Africa” in Africa Today (2012).
Daniel Künzler. “Rapping Against the Lack of Change: Rap music in Mali and Burkina Faso” in the book Native Tongues: An African Hip-Hop Reader (2011) edited by P. Khalil. Saucier.

HHAP Episode 11: Bavubuka Foundation and Indigenous Hip Hop in Africa

This is episode 11 of the podcast, and the third in a series of episodes recorded live at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival in Hartford, Connecticut. The festival took place the 6th to the 9th of April, 2017.

This episode is a conversation with Babaluku and Gilbert from Bavubuka Foundation in Kampala, Uganda. Babaluku is a founding member of the Uganda hip hop group Bataka Squad, and has been involved in the hip hop community in Uganda since the early years. Gilbert, the hip hop archivist, is a photographer who has been archiving hip hop culture in Africa for several years. Through the Bavubuka Foundation, Babaluku and Gilbert, have built a large hip hop network and community in Uganda and east & central Africa. Their yearly B-Global Indigenous Hip Hop Gathering* happens at the end of December and brings in Macs from all over East and Central Africa

*The name of the gathering is quoted wrongly in the podcast

To get in touch with Bavubuka on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bavubuka/

Contents

4:51 Bavubuka’s work with the youth

19:52 Minutes in impact of Invisible Children and other NGOs on their work & distortions of African stories.

30:08 African linkages

35:17 Gilbert

38:45 indigenous hip hop

50:15 Get in touch

56:02 “Traveling Man” by Babaluku

HHAP Episode 10: Hip Hop and the State in Cuba

This is episode 10 of the podcast, and the first in a series of episodes recorded live at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival in Hartford, Connecticut. The festival took place the 6th to the 9th of April, 2017. This episode was a panel titled “Independent and Political Hip Hop in Cuba” with Pedro Vidal of the Cuban Soul Foundation in Miami, Florida and hip hop artists David D Omni and Escuadron Patriota, who live in Cuba. The panel was an interesting discussion on hip hop and the state in Cuba.

This is a link to the video for the song Decadencia, played at the end of the episode. The video has English subtitles. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQPXTsTderI

David D Omni on Facebook and Twitter @domnibus

Escuadron Patriota has a Twitter account @s4dronpatriota, but he has not posted in awhile.

Here is a link to the Cuban Soul Foundation: http://cubansoulfoundation.org/

HHAP Episode 9: A Discussion with Edem on Hip Hop and Language in Ghana

This episode is a conversation with Ghanaian hip hop, hiplife, and reggae artist Edem. Edem is one of the first hip hop artists to rap in Ewe. Many other Ghanaian hip hop artists perform in Twi or Pidgin English. In this conversation, we discuss hip hop and hiplife in Ghana. When it comes to hiop hop, Ghana follows its own rules. The relationship between hip hop and Hiplife in Ghana is an ongoing debate. This conversation with Edem covers that, as he explains how he uses different sounds and different languages in his music. Edem, like many artists in Ghana, has moved between genres, sometimes mixing genres in the same song. As one of the few artists to rap in Ewe, Edem also discusses the importance of language and culture in his music. As an artist, his music reflects his African, Ghanaian, and Ewe identities, something that Edem feels has been important in establishing himself as an artist.

Episode Outline:
Introduction
“The Legacy” (7:20)
“Angels and Demons” (11:20)
Conversation (13:45)
Outro with “Gbevu” (50:52)

You can find Edem online on several platforms: Edem’s music can bought on iTunes | on Facebook | on Twitter @iamedem

HHAP Episode 8: Hip Hop in the Academy, in Conversation With Seth Markle

Dr. Seth Markle is an Associate Professor of History and International Studies at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut. Seth received his PhD in History from New York University. At Trinity College he teaches the courses Global Hip Hop Cultures and Introduction to Hip Hop. Much of his academic work has centered around Diaspora communities in Tanzania. His new book A Motorcycle on Hell Run: Tanzania, Black Power and the Uncertain Future of Pan-Africanism, 1964-1974 is scheduled to be released this year with Michigan State University Press.

His work in hip hop has been global. He has been very active in the hip hop scene in Tanzania, where is known as DJ Pemba. He has also traveled to several countries and worked with hip hop communities from Costa Rica to Russia. He is currently the faculty advisor for the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival, which happens every year on the campus of Trinity College and features artists, activists, and scholars from all over the world.

In this conversation we discuss the festival, it’s background and mission, as well as how people can get involved. We also discuss his work in Tanzania, his research, and being a hip hop academic.

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