In the hot glove of a sticky East African night, the last act of the annual Sauti za Busara festival takes place. ‘Local’ outfit FM Academia – with over twenty members in the band – are rocking the open-air venue (an old walled fort in the centre of Zanzibar Town) with their unique ‘muziki da dansa’ rumba style, when, suddenly, on stage come literally dozens of the festival’s crew. The now over-crowded hugely enthusiastic stage dances out the last number of the 2012 event. Mark Stewart reports… Continue reading Busara Festival to leave its Zanzibar home?
One of the first words you will hear when coming to Zanzibar is ‘Karibu’. Like the breeze of the Kaskazi trade winds, it is a warm Swahili welcome to the coast of East Africa. Already I can feel a sense of excitement in the air: the Sauti za Busara “Sounds of Wisdom” festival is about to begin
Tanzanian Bongo Flava seems to be gathering momentum outside the continent and if the numbers of Fly readers airing their views about this music are anything to go by, it’s moving and shaking its way round the world
In releasing Bongo Flava: Swahili Rap from Tanzania Out Here Records have cottoned on to this phenomenon coming out of Tanzania. The 14 tracks give anyone outside Tanzania and the East African region a feeling for the scene today — a sense of the sheer number of artists out there and the variety of rap styles and sounds they’re producing.
Bongo Flava is the name for the music that has been coming out of the streets of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania since the early 1990s. Bongo Flava isn’t one style: it has a mix of rap, hip hop, and R&B for starters but these labels don’t do it justice. It’s rap, hip hop and R&B Tanzanian style: a big melting pot of tastes, history, culture and identity.
Five years ago, Ben Herson travelled to Senegal and was blown away by the skills of the local hip hop talent. He returned with his ‘mobile guerrilla-style’ production techniques and has just released a great album on his own label, Nomadic Wax. We have had words.