Category Archives: Culture

New Music: Ladysmith and Salif Keita Release Anti-Xenophobia Song

Two of Africa’s most famous musicians have released a song against the recent violence against foreigners in South Africa. The song “United We Stand” brings together Ladysmith Black Mambazo from South Africa and Malian singer Salif Keita.

m

Lyrics include the line “Africa is our home, make it a better place”.

At least seven people have died over a month of attacks on foreigners and foreign-owned property in South Africa.

Ladysmith Black Mambazo singer Sibongiseni Shabalala told the BBC he was trying to send the message that “Africa is for all of us”.

“You can’t say you don’t like the foreigners to stay in your country. This is not your country, this is our country.

“We are saying people should unite. If there’s problems, people should sit down and talk.

“One day your child will want to go and live in Mali, Nigeria or Ghana but because of your decision today it will be very difficult for your future generation to be able to do the same.”

The song is playing on South African radio from Friday, will be premiered on TV on Friday evening and will be released on iTunes on Monday.

Source: BBC

Culture: Kassav et des artistes sud-africains s’unissent contre la xénophobie

Des artistes sud-africains s’associeront au groupe de zouk Kassav’ lors de leur concert contre la xénophobie le 26 avril 2015 au Bassline de Newtown à 21h30.

10606456_842691349076425_7384902963472084194_n

En réaction aux récentes attaques xénophobes en Afrique du Sud, des musiciens locaux manifesteront leur solidarité aux victimes en se joignant au groupe français Kassav’, qui interprétera One Love de Bob Marley.

Il s’agira de leur première performance en Afrique du sud, à la veille du Freedom Day national.

Provenant de la Martinique et de la Guadeloupe, Kassav a su créer un son singulier, comportant à la fois des éléments de musique créole et de fanfare caribéenne, teintées de rock, de musique africaine et de pop.

Les membres de ce groupe, le bassiste Georges Décimus, les chanteurs Jocelyn Beroard and Jean-Philippe Marthely, le pianiste Jean-Claude Naimro, le guitariste Jacob Desvarieux, ont enchanté les mélomanes à travers le monde.

lindt chocolate fondant

Détails de l’évènement :

Tarif  : 200 R pour les réservations en ligne / 250 R pour l’achat au guichet
Reservation : http://www.webtickets.co.za/event.aspx?itemid=1456393770
Emplacement : The Bassline, Newtown, Johannesburg

Pour en savoir plus sur Kassav’ :

Facebook : http://www.facebook.com/kassavofficiel?ref=ts&fref=ts
Twitter : https://twitter.com/kassav_official

Musique: “What I Did For Love” Nouveau Tube de David Guetta feat. Emeli Sandé

Extrait du 6ème album de David Guetta , le morceau “What I Did For Love” en featuring avec Emeli Sandé a maintenant droit à son clip et le singe est le signe distinctif de cette nouvelle vidéo haute en couleur, découvez-le ici.

Certains verront un rapport avec le célèbre gorille King-Kong, d’autres une manière amusante de personnifier un animal emblématique. A l’image de Gorillaz David Guetta nous propose un clip sous forme de bande dessinée pour illustrer son dernier single “What I Did For Love” en duo avec Emeli Sandé.

Dans ce clip, nous sommes au coeur d’une histoire d’amour entre l’anthropoïde et une jeune femme. Vous retrouverez aussi plusieurs scènes de combats avec d’autres créatures, dans un décor ou le rose est majoritaire.

David Guetta, un DJ complètement français mais parfois complètement déjanté !

Source: Tendances Ouest

The Professionally Haunted Life Of Helen Oyeyemi

Being haunted seems like it might be an occupational hazard for Helen Oyeyemi. Her books are re-worked fairy tales, the gruesome kind, with be-headings and wicked stepmothers and ghosts and death, death, and more death (though, once dead, her characters don’t always stay that way).

The first time I met her, it was in a bar so dark that all I could see were her eyes and very white teeth. Cheshire cat-like, she reminded me of a line from her fourth novel, Mr. Fox: “There’s something ghostlike about this girl … she will appear at certain times and in certain places, and at other times she will recede into a disinterested dark.” She’s talking quietly but with great concentration about elephants, which she says are her spirit animals.

The next day, we sit in a quiet restaurant on the Upper West Side. One-on-one, in bright light, she solidifies, densifies, and even becomes a little bit loud. When she laughs, it has the force of an unleashing — harsh, wild, almost a cackle.

We have come from a media lunch, at one of those restaurants where, when you order ravioli, they give you exactly four pieces arranged tastefully on a plate. Anthony Weiner walked by, face set and nostrils flared. (“That,” Oyeyemi said later, “was not a good omen.”)

She lives in Prague, but her publisher has flown her to New York for a three-day publicity blitz, which has left her looking drained and a little bit hunted. Her fifth novel, Boy, Snow, Bird, came out in March. She consents to pose with a cardboard mockup of the book cover, but she holds it up so it covers everything except her eyes.

Oyeyemi was something of a child literary star, having written her first book at 18 “instead of studying for A-levels.” But now that she’s almost 30 and on her 5th book, the label is beginning to chafe. “It’s getting embarrassing because I’m getting older and older. I’m 29. I just have to brush it off now,” she says. “Otherwise it’s going to stop me from doing what I want to do. I want to get better. I want to write things. I’m seeing this as a long game — I want to write as many books as I’m allowed to publish.”

Elephants are just one aspect of her intricate personal symbology. She keeps talismans — keys that don’t open anything, teapots, certain scents. And she’s a spiritual magpie as well. She is Catholic but “in it for the mysticism,” and she says she’s afraid of cats because she can’t account for their intentions. Monsters are real. Magic is real. “The way that people feel changes everything,” she says. “Feelings are forces. They cause us to time travel. And to leave ourselves, to leave our bodies.” She adds, “I would be that kind of psychologist who says ‘You’re absolutely right — there are monsters under the bed.”

“And,” she smiles nervously, “sometimes I feel weird about time. Sometimes I feel that it doesn’t go in the order we perceive it. There are … repetitions that maybe we decide not to notice because it is simpler. I like to pick up on those moments.”

Born in Nigeria, Oyeyemi grew up in Lewisham, South London. Her father is a substitute teacher and her mother works for the London Underground. “I was always at the library,” she says, “since we didn’t have many fiction books at home.” Reading Little Women as a child “turned me into a writer,” she says. “I had so many problems with it. I was so upset with Beth dying, with Jo and Laurie not getting married. So I just crossed out all those things and wrote new endings. Then I went from there to writing my own things and never really looked back.”

In her latest book, Boy, Snow, Bird, three women with strange names reenact the Snow White myth in 1950s New England. Boy, a runaway from New York City, marries Arturo, and they have a child Bird. But Bird’s dark skin reveals reveals Arturo’s secret: his family is a light-skinned black family “passing” as white. Boy grows to resent Snow, Arturo’s beautiful blond daughter from a previous marriage, and sends her away to keep her away from her dark-skinned little sister.
Helen Oyeyemi’s previous books include Mr. Fox and The Icarus Girl, written when she was still a student.

Helen Oyeyemi’s previous books include Mr. Fox and The Icarus Girl, written when she was still a student.
Piotr Cieplak/Penguin Group

In Boy, Snow, Bird, beauty is treacherous; one character stops going to school because of the overwhelming attention from her classmates. Another is raped. Another’s father tries to disfigure her to protect her from the curse of beauty. Oyeyemi says that in stories and in real life, beauty is a power that “is used against its holder.”

She was struck by the story of Snow White, she says, because, “I found it so strange how she could be so mild and so sweet after everything she’s gone through. She’s thrown out of her house by her wicked stepmother. She has to live with these dwarves. There’s so much front to it. And it started to scare me because I thought that beneath that front there must be so much suffering. Snow, in all her unexposed beauty, and being in a way public property of everyone who looks at her, goes through that. I find something so terrible about suffering in the open in public, with nobody seeing what’s happening to you.”

Oyeyemi says that she thinks of herself as “ugly but interesting,” and she’s happy with that. “It helps me to think more clearly, if that makes sense.”

I ask why she thinks she ‘s ugly.

“Boys would come up and tell me,” she says, matter-of-factly. “I’d be on the bus home, and they would say, “You’re so ugly, do you know that?” And after a while, I would just say, “Yes, thank you.” At first I would cry. But I after a while you just think ‘Why does it matter so much?'”

Oyeyemi clearly still carries wounds from her teenage years: “I was suicidal for a long time in my teens and I was so unhappy,” she says. “It was the kind of unhappiness that you know everyone else is feeling, but you don’t care because you’ve dehumanized them, because they’re all monsters and demons and beasts who are out to kill you, so you become a beast and a monster yourself. I regret so much.”

Her fairy tales are not of the happily-ever-after variety: “Sometimes people ask me what I write and I say that I retell fairy tales, and they say, ‘Oh, children’s books!’ And that makes me laugh. People say things like ‘I want a fairy tale existence.’ The Brothers Grimm would be looking at them in this astonished way, like ‘So you would like your whole family to be murdered and then eaten in a pie?'” She laughs delightedly.

“People think they’re soft because they’re these perfect examples of narrative order. There is an ending that is usually happy, and a beginning, middle, and end … In this era where everyone is kind of postmodern and meta, we dissociate in a lot of ways from our circumstance. So I think there’s that sense that they’re so ordered, and therefore orderly, but actually, they’re just completely chaotic.”

And fairy tales teach lessons, she says. Lessons like “Everything that you see is not necessarily what it is. You have to find another way to know things. You have to find another way to know things. There is inner vision. And then there’s exterior vision. There are levels of seeing.”

They reveal “some of the hardest and harshest truths about the ways that we live and the ways that we’ve always lived.” She cites a story she found in a book of Czech fairy tales. A princess is being courted by a magician, but she refuses him. In punishment, the magician turns her into a black woman. As Oyeyemi read it, she started crying. “It was awful … The worst thing that the teller of this tale can imagine is being black.” In Boy, Snow, Bird, she writes, “it’s not whiteness that sets Them against Us, but the worship of whiteness.” She tells me, “I feel as if we’re still in that era. There are still lots of ways in which it is horrific not to be the norm.”

Boy, Snow, Bird is her “quiet book,” Oyeyemi says. All of her books have personalities: Her first book, The Icarus Girl, which she wrote at age 18 instead of studying for those A-levels, is “startled, wide-eyed.”

“I was a baby,” she says. “I had no idea what I was doing. I was just 18 and writing this novel instead of doing my homework. I don’t think I understood that it was going to be read. So that has a kind of — not innocence — but a kind of unworldliness to it. I don’t think I could ever write like that again.”

“ People say things like ‘I want a fairy tale existence.’ The Brothers Grimm would be looking at them in this astonished way, like ‘So you would like your whole family to be murdered and then eaten in a pie?’

– Helen Oyeyemi

Her second novel is, (and here her voice deepens, and she does a little regimental arm swing) “look at me! I can write sentences!” She laughs. Her third, White Is for Witching, “has a sharp personality, and I think it’s in a way an unlikeable book, because it talks about racism and eating disorders and hauntings. It’s a book that doesn’t want to be read, in some way.”

“Mr. Fox is a kind of playful, romping around one.” (Her idea of play clearly involves a lot of beheadings).

She talks about her books as though they are people, and as if she isn’t particularly responsible for what they’re like. She doesn’t write: writing “comes upon” her. Plots run away from her, though she tries to contain them. She’s a kind of beleaguered shepherd, trying to rein in her characters as they incline, inevitably, towards chaos. She says, “When I feel like my characters are staring to disobey is when I feel like they’re alive and something is starting to happen.”
When I point out that she talks as though she’s just a vessel for her stories, she laughs. “It’s a great way of abdicating responsibility.”

Critics like to call Oyeyemi’s books “magical realism,” but she hates that tag. “It’s not what I write,” she says, flinging her hands up in exasperation. “I don’t have a style. I just try to write what the story demands.”

She does have a style, a kind of jolly gruesomeness, though it isn’t easy to categorize. In the way that a child might, without any real malice, pluck the legs off an insect and watch it squirm, Oyeyemi pins her subjects to the wall and makes them wriggle. It’s a little wry, a little earnest, a little dangerous — weird and familiar at the same time.

Over the years, she’s bounced around between Paris, Toronto, London, Prague, Berlin, Budapest, and Prague again. “I feel a need to choose a city, or have a feeling that it chooses me,” she explains.

“I hit something in eastern Europe. There’s something so strange about it that ties in with my psychology. There’s a kind of volatility. When the changes happen they’re fantastical changes, like in Prague just recently, the festival of light. There’s a tower on a hill, and they transformed it into a lighthouse and the hill into waves. So when the city changes it’s a big shift. Cities like New York and London change in increments. Places open and close. Places like Prague and Budapest, they change. Nights in Budapest are so dark, maybe because the street lighting is so terrible, but the nights seems darker and full of shadows.”

“Don’t you get lonely, moving alone?” I ask. “I have enough friends,” she says. “I don’t need any more, unless one dies and then I can replace them.” She laughs her abrupt laugh.

The hardest thing about moving, Oyeyemi says, is moving her books. “And my teapots. I have eleven teapots now. I think I need to stop. They’re fragile. I always get so nervous, like, My god, am I going to make it through with my teapots? My most recent one I got in Moscow with a firebird on it, a creature from Russian mythology.

“The way I live now is that I only write, which means that I’m very poor but very happy,” she says. “Everything in my life is the way I want it to be.”

 

– Annalisa Quinn

South African Music Legends Honoured with Stamps

A set of postage stamps commemorating South African music legends. Each stamp features a portrait of the musician by well-known graphic artist Vumile Mavumengwana, who has also produced a range of matching envelopes for the series. The musicians featured, in no particular order, are:

Popular reggae musician Lucky Dube: 1963-2007

Grammy award-winning singer and civil rights activist, Miriam Makeba: 1932-2008

Legendary anti-apartheid pop singer, Brenda Fassie: 1964-2004

South African mbaqanga singer, Simon ‘Mahlathini’ Nkabinde: 1935-1999

Popular saxophonist and jazz musician, Kippie Moeketsi: 1925-1983

South African Zulu musician, singer and composer, Solomon Linda: 1909-1962

Singer, composer and director of a number of popular musicals, Taliep Petersen: 1950-2006

One of the greatest pennywhistle artist, Spokes Mashiyane: 1933-1972

South African singer-songwriter, journalist and playwright, Johannes Kerkorrel: 1960-2002

South African rock singer, songwriter, and performer, James Phillips: 1959-1995

Lauryn Hill, voix de Frantz Fanon pour dénoncer le colonialisme

La chanteuse, que l’on devrait revoir sur scène le 13 septembre au Zénith, participe à «Concerning Violence», documentaire inspiré des «Damnés de la terre».

Göran Hugo Olsson, réalisateur suédois de Göteborg, présente dans plusieurs festivals Concerning Violence, Nine Scenes From the Anti-Imperialistic Self-Defense, un documentaire sur le colonialisme et ses effets dévastateurs. Son film, nourri d’images d’archives, est inspiré de l’ouvrage les Damnés de la terre, du martiniquais Frantz Fanon, écrit après le putsch des généraux et la répression sanglante du 17 octobre 1961, à Paris, opposant la police française aux manifestants algériens.

Le réalisateur a fait appel à Lauryn Hill, 39 ans, pour être la voix off de son film. Dans une interview accordée au site du magazine Dazed, il explique pourquoi il a tenu à ce que la chanteuse américaine, en pleine tentative de retour après de longues années d’errance, prête sa voix à son film:

«Je savais, par des amis communs, que Lauryn Hill était une grande lectrice de Fanon, explique-t-il. Je lui ai envoyé une lettre accompagnée d’images alors qu’elle était en prison pour des problèmes fiscaux.

Elle m’a répondu immédiatement: “C’est étrange, je suis ici en prison et je suis en train de lire ce livre. Je ne vais pas seulement faire la voix off, je vais aussi écrire la musique.” Comme elle n’a pas été libérée avant la fin du mois d’octobre, elle n’a pas eu le temps de faire la musique du documentaire. Mais deux jours après sa sortie de prison, elle était au studio pour enregistrer la narration.»

 

Lire la suite sur LIBERATION .

African Royals: HRH Princess Sikhanyiso Dlamini of Swaziland

Princess Sikhanyiso Dlamini of Swaziland (born September 1, 1987) is the eldest daughter of king Mswati III of Swaziland. She is one of his more than 24 children, and her mother is one of Mswati’s 15 wives, Inkhosikati LaMbikiza (Sibonelo Mngometulu).

10577035_10152581597357072_8419115871084576424_nPrincess Sikhanyiso was educated in Britain at a mixed private school; St Edmund’s College, Ware, in Hertfordshire, where she was in Challoner House. She continued to study drama at Biola University in California.[1] In 2012, Princess Sikhanyiso graduated from Sydney University with a of master of digital communication. While in Australia, she resided in Glebe with her palace-appointed aide, Yemma Sholo. She is the first child of Inkhosikati LaMbikiza and has more than 200 blood-related uncles and aunts through her grandfather King Sobhuza II, who had 70 wives and 201 children. She is also one of his 1000 grandchildren in the Royal Swazi House of Dlamini.

She is the first-born daughter of 23 children born to King Mswati III, her mother being King Mswati III’s young love, Inkhosikati LaMbikiza (Sibonelo Mngomezulu). She has 200 aunts and uncles, not including their own spouses.

In 2001, Mswati III instituted the umchwasho – a traditional chastity rite – in Swaziland as a means of combatting the AIDS epidemic. The princess became a focus of controversy as, while she was staying abroad, she was not bound by the strictures of the umchwasho. While studying abroad, Princess Sikhanyiso has developed a reputation for ignoring or rebelling against her native country’s traditions.
Sikhanyiso wears Western-style jeans and miniskirts, something women in Swaziland are banned from doing.

In 2004 Princess Sikhanyiso was involved in a controversy in the Swazi media. Saying she had gone on a trip to the U.S. and Britain, she left an E1 M. ($100,000 USD) bill to the Swazi taxpayer. A press statement was issued from the prime minister’s office to refute these claims.

At the end of the ban in 2005, Princess Sikhanyiso, then 17, celebrated with a party involving loud music and alcohol at the Queen mother’s residence. In punishment for the princess’s disrespect of the royal residence, during which Mswati announced his engagement to a new wife-to-be, an official overseeing traditional affairs beat Princess Sikhanyiso with a stick.

The following year, the Princess criticized the institution of polygamy in Swaziland, saying “Polygamy brings all advantages in a relationship to men, and this to me is unfair and evil”. The Princess was subsequently “gagged” by the Royal Palace and the press was not allowed to contact her. She is an aspiring actress and rapper and is commonly known as “Pashu” In Swaziland.

She was featured in a documentary on the monarchy in Swaziland, the disparity between the royals’ wealth and widespread poverty of their subjects, and Swaziland’s AIDS crisis; under the title “Without the King”.

In late September 2013, she had a three-hour long Twitter conversation with proscribed Swazi organisation, the People’s United Democratic Movement, after which her Twitter account was deleted without explanation.