Senegalese Rapper Dip Doundou Guiss shook the country of Senegal with his song #FreeSenegal. The rapper spoke about pertinent issues surrounding the Senegalese government at that time.
On March 3, 2021, Ousmane Sonko, who is a former presidential candidate the leader of the opposition Pastef party, was accused of sexual assault by a beauty salon employee. Sonko is also known for exposing the Senegalese government for corrupt practices involving offshore tax sanctuaries for the Senegalese elite.
After Sonko was arrested, it prompted unrest that was never before seen. Since Senegal had an image of stability, this came as a shock to surrounding nations.
Protesters were met with aggression from the police department and which fueled the #FreeSenegal Movement which called for an end of police brutality. Various videos were displayed on the internet of the unrest in the streets as police officers attack unarmed Senegalese protesters.
Dip Doundou Guiss took it upon himself to address the issues going on in his country with his single #FreeSenegal where he highlighted the corrupt nature of the government.
The music video began with a melodic flow of a saxophone along with protesters sharing the traumatic experience which illustrates anguish and sadness. Guiss captures this moment perfectly to describe the issues happening.
One of the lines that stuck the most to me was, “The moon gives way to the sun, forget your pride we elected you. How dare you be on Twitter while your people are dying?”
Whenever rappers take out the time to address the issues that affect their community it is always admirable. It lets the audience know that even when an artist reaches a certain level of fame that they’ll never forget where they came from.
Being new to Senegalese rap, listening to this piece was definitely worthwhile. Between Guiss’s flow and the production, it accurately depicts the emotions of himself and the others who were involved in the #FreeSenegal Movement.
He returns to one of rap’s main intended purposes. Which is to tell a story and inform others about what’s going on in their area. I was very impressed with this song and I hope to see more revolutionary music from Dip Doundou Guiss soon.