NEW MUSIC AFRICA

Artist: PAPPY KOJO

Video Title: REALER NO FT. JOEY B

After their much talked about “Wave” single, Pappy Kojo and Joey B tag team on Pappy’s new single “Realer No”.  What stands out in the whole song is Pappy Kojo’s flow- We haven’t heard anyone make #Fante lyrics [spoken in the Western region of Ghana] sound so fresh since Kwaw Kese’s “Nonsense” circa 2004.  The blatant Hilfiger and New York Mets apparel is a bit confusing as Ghanaians don’t give a flying f*^@ about base ball let alone fashion by Hilfiger. Pappy and his gang could have gone for a much more interesting local aesthetic. The forced US HipHop tropes will throw you off but other than that, “Realer No” is a banger. Well to be fair some commentators online have mentioned how similar it sounds to “Wave”

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Accra Creative Writing Boot Camp

Accra’s literature collectives are running workshops throughout this month to November. Get involved.

 

Gird Writing Camp

 

Gird Writing Camp

 

Ghanaian Artist El Anatsui, First African Appointed at London’s Royal Academy

Ghanaian Artist El Anatsui, First African Appointed at London’s Royal Academy

via Ghanaian Artist El Anatsui, First African Appointed at London’s Royal Academy.

HOME FOR INSPIRATION: TAWIAH’S ACCRA REUNION

Tawiah - Accra dot Alt

Stopping traffic in Downtown Accra

by MOLLY SULLIVAN | photos by ABASS ISMAIL and MANTSE ARYEEQUAYE

A year after her first Skype Talk Party Series experience, TAWIAH’s much anticipated return to Accra proved to be well worth the wait.

An intimate evening with the Ghanaian British singer/songwriter began with an open Q&A, where questions sprung out about her creative process and the musicians that influenced her at ages 8, 16, 24, and now (her list included gospel, Wu-tang Clan, Erykah Badu, Radiohead, Me’shell Ndegeocello, the Spice Girls, and her own stuff)

Accra dot Alt

Posing with a thrift store owner in Downtown Accra

Accompanied by Tawiah’s commentary, we screened music videos from FREEdom DROP, her illmatic mixtape released last March. Videos for  “TearDROP”“FACes”, and “SEAlion”– all teased the crowd into stunned silence. Tawiah shared with us the inspiration for these songs, the vision behind the videos, and amusing anecdotes from her creation process. She discussed the decision to set the music video for “FACes” in Accra, the choice to deviate from the standard song structure with “SEAlion”, and her inability to sink during the filming of “TearDROP”.

Tawiah 7 - Accra do Alt

Posting up outside a clothing stall in Northridge

The evening concluded with a chillingly beautiful, live performance. Tawiah, poised for utter destruction, propped up her guitar on a knee, a loop station beneath her feet. There was a noticeable shift in the room when Tawiah began to sing – a collective leaning in of bodies gravitating towards the perfect plethora of sound making. The set included two new songs from a forthcoming album this year. Upon much pleading from the audience, Tawiah consented to perform again, this time with a slow jam remix of Soul for Real’s ’95 classic, “Candy Rain”.

Luckily, amidst the praise and congratulations from fans that followed, we were able to pull Tawiah aside for some final questions about the reception to FREEdom DROP, her two week visit in Ghana, and what to expect next from the musician.

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JULS Drops June Rain [Two New Joints]

by Stephen Aggor + Sionne Neely

JSCMIt’s officially June summer madness. This month, Ghanaian beatmaker JULS drops two 2-hour sonic gold mixes that will keep you trucking through the heat. Hip hop lovers will jump all over The Summer Cookout Mixtape [released June 4th].  The rainy season babymaker, the Back + Forth R+B Mix [released June 16th], brings back the buoyant brilliance of the 90’s groove.

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TAWIAH on LOVE: The Cab Confessional

by Sionne Neely | photos by Mantse Aryeequaye + Abass Ismail for REDD Kat Pictures

TAWIAH on James Town Pier, Accra | photo by REDD Kat Pictures [Dec. 2012]

TAWIAH on James Town Pier, Accra | photo by REDD Kat Pictures [Dec. 2012]

According to Ghanaian singer/songwriter TAWIAH, love is a beautiful complicated thing. Like music, love is made up of vibrational frequencies that wield magic into real life.

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TAWIAH: When FREEdom Drops [April 30th!]

Interview with Sionne Neely |  photos by Mantse Aryeequaye + Abass Ismail for REDD Kat Pictures

TAWIAH releases FREEdom Drop on April 30th | photo by REDD Kat Pictures

TAWIAH releases FREEdom Drop on April 30th | photo by REDD Kat Pictures [Dec 2012]

ADA: During your set at IND!E FUSE 2012 you talked a bit about love. We can’t assume everyone defines it the same way. What are your thoughts on love?

T: You have encounters with love everyday – with friends, family, lovers. Love is one of the most important things. . I think I’m a bit of a hopeless romantic. I love love. It’s an extremely complex thing but do we make it complex with our mortal thoughts and ways? Is love an act or is it a feeling? Surely love is ever present – it’s there before we manifested into our physical bodies. It’s always there, innit? It definitely should feel good and not judge or discriminate. But we put our own thing on what love is and what it should be.

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TAWIAH – “FACes” [Official Music Video]

Video

TAWIAH in Arts Centre, Accra [Dec. 2012] | photo by Abass Ismail

TAWIAH in Arts Centre, Accra [Dec. 2012] | photo by Mantse Aryeequaye

Here it is, folks. “FACes” – the second single off TAWIAH’s upcoming mixtape album, FREEdom Drop, out on April 30th. The video is produced by REDD Kat Pictures in association with ACCRA [dot] ALT, directed by Mantse Aryeequaye.
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Old School Soul: DJ JULS Mixes Magic

by Sionne Neely | photos courtesy of DJ Juls

DJ JULS At Work

DJ JULS At Work

DJ JULS has been on the grind in 2013. It’s only April and the UK-based Ghanaian producer has dropped three mixtapes so far – the V-Day lovers joint, The Cupid Shot Mix [Feb. 14th], the dancehall fever anthems on Di Bubble Mix [March 11th] and the redhot follow-up to last summer’s Afrobeat fix, DJ Jul’s AfroBeat Mix Volume 2 [released this Monday, April 8th]. Over the last several years, Juls has worked with all the Ghana greats from FOKN BOIS [Wanlov the Kubolor x M3NSA] to E.L., Yaa Pono, Sarkodie, Efya, M.anifest and more.

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TAWIAH: “Faces” [Official Video Promo]

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Finally!! Our lovely London lady – TAWIAH – is dropping the second single – “Faces” – off the much anticipated digital album release, FREEdom Drop, out on April 30th.

Check out the official video [directed by Mantse Aryeequaye] + download the song for free this Friday, April 12th on Tawiah’s website. The track is released this week in support of  International Day for Street Children: Louder Together 12th April and Street Child Africa.

Watch the promo here: