The podcast is the longest-running podcast on African Hip Hop culture. It features discussions on African Hip Hop music & culture from around the continent and the Diaspora. The podcast is produced in the Department of African Studies at Howard University. You can access the podcast at www.hiphopafrican.com and on all major podcast platforms.
HHAP 89: Hip Hop Conferences & New Releases
Links and information discussed in the episode A Huis Clos, a play by French rapper Kerry James. 15 November – 3 December at Théâtre du Rond-Point in Paris France A new play by French rap legend, Kery James and French director and writer Marc Lainé. In À huis clos, Kery James plays Soulaymaan, a lawyer whose brotherRead More »
06/11/2023 • 24 minutes 41 seconds
HHAP 88: October 2023 Hip Hop African News, Events, and Updates
The World Breaking Championship 2023 took place in Leuven, Belgium on September 23-24. The WBC featured 115 b-boys and 92 b-girls from 62 countries, including Algeria, Botswana, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Morocco, Senegal, and Tunisia. Victor Montalvo (USA) won the men’s competition, Philip Kim, “B-Boy Phil Wizard,” (Canada) came in second place, andRead More »
09/10/2023 • 12 minutes 11 seconds
HHAP Ep. 87: The Indigenization of Breakdance Aesthetics in Uganda
Alfdaniels Mabingo (2022) Re-Contextualising Breakdance Aesthetics: Performance, Performativity, and Re-Enaction of Breakdancing in Uganda, Journal of African Cultural Studies, 34:4, 404-421, DOI: 10.1080/13696815.2022.2132473
In this episode, we speak with Dr. Alfdaniels Mabingo who wrote a fascinating article on breakdance in Uganda for the Journal of African Cultural Studies. Uganda has one of the largest breakdance scenes in the world, and Mabingo examines how the youth have reconfigured, localized, and re-interpreted breakdance aesthetics in that country. He argues that as breakdance spread, and youth innovated the art form, breakdance became part of Ugandan culture. In this sense, breakdance is no longer just a Western import, but Ugandans have evolved a breakdance into a Ugandan art form.
The central thesis of Mabingo's article is to show how Ugandans have been able to localize breakdance and make it their own. He also talks about his research methods and his interest in what
18/09/2023 • 35 minutes 17 seconds
HHAP Ep. 86: Hip Hop Events, Updates, News, & the Burna Boy/Khaligraph Jones Conversations
Events discussed in episode:
August – December 2023 | Culture Curators: Hip Hop 50 | National Museum of Accra (Ghana)
September 28 & 29, 2023 – Archiving Hip Hop: 50 years in the making – Milton Keynes, UK / online
May 16-19, 2024 | European Hip Hop Studies Conference | Cork, Ireland
In the article Pride Month: Embracing The LGBTIQA+ Community In African Hip Hop - Hiphop Africa, these are some of the artists featured in the article:
ZuluMecca | https://www.instagram.com/zulumecca
K.Keed | https://www.instagram.com/whodat_keed/
Dope Saint Jude | https://www.instagram.com/dopesaintjude
Mx Blouse| https://www.instagram.com/sandiblouse
Keko | https://www.instagram.com/kekotown1
Noti Flow | https://www.instagram.com/notiflowmusic
The Eternal Spirit of Hip-Hop in Algeria (Documentary)
Hiphop as a Vessel for Black Consciousness: Digging into the artistry of Pure Akan and Elom 20ce.
Theme music: DJ Teck Zilla
05/09/2023 • 28 minutes 51 seconds
HHAP Ep. 85: Police Brutality in France, Democracy in Dakar, and Hip-Hop’s 50th
Events discussed in the episode
August 10 & 11 | Hip-Hop 50: Past, Present & Future | Howard University
Join us for a dynamic fusion of academic discourse and cultural celebration. Engage with renowned scholars, influential artists, and passionate enthusiasts as we explore the multifaceted dimensions of Hip Hop’s impact on society, music, fashion, and activism.
Delve into thought-provoking panel discussions, captivating performances, and interactive workshops. Uncover the intricate narratives that shape the genre’s past, present, and future. From breakdancing to lyricism, graffiti to social justice, this conference is a platform for understanding Hip Hop culture like never before. Don’t miss out on this exhilarating opportunity at Howard University!
August 11, 2023 | Hip-Hop 50 Live | Bronx, New York
“Co-produced by Live Nation, Mass Appeal and Yankee Stadium, Hip-Hop 50 Live will celebrate the genre’s 50th birthday in The Bronx this August.”
11/07/2023 • 19 minutes 35 seconds
HHAP Ep. 84: A Conversation with M.I. Abaga on Integrity and Longevity in Hip Hop
Understanding the World of HipHop and Afrobeats with legendary Nigerian Hip Hop artist M.I. Abaga
Jude Lemfani Abaga, also known as M.I. Abaga He is a Nigerian rapper, songwriter, and music producer. He was born originally in Jos, Northern Nigeria, and released his debut album in 2008. He was the CEO of the label Chocolate City from 2015 to 2019 and then started his label in 2020 with incredible music. Before getting into the music industry, he studied in the U.S. for a while, then came back to Nigeria and got his music career launched in 2003.
“Hip-hop, as an art form, requires integrity for you to be respected.” - M.I. Abaga
He has received several music awards, including the MTV Africa Music Awards and BET Awards. He is also involved in different initiatives to bring about social and political change in Nigeria; he was declared the U.N. Office of Drugs and Crime Goodwill Ambassador against the smuggling of migrants in 2012. In his role, he was charged with speaking out on and dra
01/06/2023 • 54 minutes 35 seconds
HHAP Ep 83: Nigeria’s Dhoro Styles on Graffiti as a Medium of Communication
Peter King Ubiebor also known as Dhoro Styles is a Nigerian street and graffiti artist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental biology from the University of Benin in Edo state, Nigeria. Dhoro Styles has a strong focus on drawing, painting, graffiti writing, and creating murals with spray paints and paintbrush techniques.
In our conversation with him, Dhoro Styles told us that his interest for drawing started at the age of 4, and continued throughout secondary school. He added that it was in secondary school that he did his first graffiti writing with spray paint. Dhoro Styles states that he draws inspiration from contemporary urban cultures, street arts, Chicago murals, and graffiti from the 1980’s and 1990’s. As well as from Uprising, the well-known graffiti artist from Nigeria, and Eminem, the American-based rapper.
Graffiti, according to Dhoro Styles, is a medium of communication. He adds that apart from graffiti addressing social issues, “when we express ourselves on the
05/05/2023 • 31 minutes 36 seconds
HHAP Ep 82: Nigeria’s Loudbase AF Promoting Hip-Hop in Africa
This is the first episode in our Spring Series, which focuses on Nigeria this year. In this episode, we talked to Victor Uwakwe Izuchukwu, the founder of Loudbase AF Entertainment, a hip-hop community organization formed in Nigeria in 2018. Loudbase is a platform “for creatives in the hip-hop community to nurture and groom skills.” They hold a yearly Hip-Hop conference, most recently in November 2022. The conference brings together hip hop heard from around the world, especially Africa, to celebrate all aspects of hip hop culture. They not only focus on music, but also hip hop dance, DJing, graffiti, and knowledge.
You can find Loudbase on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram
02/04/2023 • 33 minutes 42 seconds
HHAP Ep. 81: M.anifest: From Madina to the Mecca
On the 15th of February, 2023, M.anifest visited Howard University, aka The Mecca, for a historical conversation around the importance of his music and Hip Hop culture as we celebrate 50 years of Hip Hop. M.anifest is one of the most prolific MCs of his generation and came for a conversation at one of the world’s most historic Black institutions of higher education. Of M.anifest, the media has called him…
“the foremost rapper on the continent.”
– The Guardian (2012)
M.anifest’s first two albums were released while he was in the U.S., where he was part of a generation of African MCs influencing the “underground” hip-hop scene at the time. In the mid-2000s, M.anifest, along with artists like Blitz (the Ambassador) Bazawule and K’Naan, marked the first time that so many African MCs would make an impact on the underground hip hop scene in the U.S., paving the way for the entry into the mainstream of afrobeats artists a decade later.
Since M.anifest’s return to Ghana in 2012, he has bec
03/03/2023 • 41 minutes 28 seconds
HHAP Ep. 80: Introducting our New Assistant Producer & more Announcements
In this short episode, we introduce you to our student assistant producer, Miranda, who will be working with us this semester.
We also discuss plans for the show, plans to propose a new Hip-Hop Studies minor at Howard University, and an upcoming visit by Ghanaian hip-hop artist M.anifest. The episode starts with the song “Too Bad” from M.anifest’s latest album From Madina to the Universe.
This year’s spring series will focus on Nigeria and we will be interviewing hip hop artists and activists to understand what is happening with the hip hop scene in Nigeria.
Toward the end of the show, Miranda introduced us to Sudanese American hip hop artist Oddisee, who is based in Washington, DC.
14/02/2023 • 14 minutes 6 seconds
HHAP Ep. 79.5: Announcements and Celebrating 50 Years of Hip Hop
This is a short episode we recorded to send out a couple of announcements and to acknowledge the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop.
13/02/2023 • 6 minutes 54 seconds
HHAP Ep 79: Hip-Hop culture as a space where Black identities are negotiated and presented
The first episode of 2023 is a special episode on hip-hop as a cultural space where Black identities can be negotiated and presented. The research project was part of a larger seminar project with the University of Maryland College Park on African/Black Diaspora Studies. The larger project was funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The overall project focused on: “the dynamics of race, ethnicity, gender, and interactions between and among first and second-generation African diaspora immigrants and native-born African Americans in the U.S.”
My project explores representations of Black identities and shared experiences by African hip-hop artists in the US.
The initial objective was to examine the music of 2nd generation African artists in America to understand how they
Represent Black identities
Discuss shared experiences
This was done via a content analysis of their songs & interviews. The artists could be classified as Millennials and Generatio
07/01/2023 • 36 minutes 23 seconds
HHAP Ep78: Eavesdrop on Cultivating Spaces for Authenticity in Hip-Hop￼
Eavesdrop is a multi-hyphenate artist who is an MC, a producer, a director, and an actor. She has been active in Cape Town’s Hip-Hop scene for almost 2 decades and as a lyricist she often produces meaningful lyrics, expressing ideas that have depth.
In this interview, we had an important conversation with Eavesdrop about the importance of representation and authenticity. We talked honestly about sometimes feeling conflicted on how best to support younger artists, especially women. Strength and confidence are a prerequisite for being a Hip-Hop artist, and we reflect on how to support other women while encouraging them to rely on their own strength and confidence to excel.
“If you need me to hold this door open for you, how are you going to learn the weight of this door?”
We also discuss South Africa’s political history and how that influences the presence and participation of women in Hip-Hop. Eavesdrop introduces us to the concept of “imbokodo” (“rock” in Zulu”), which
03/10/2022 • 40 minutes 26 seconds
HHAP Ep77: DJ Azuhl on Hip-Hop & DJing Culture in South Africa
DJ Azuhl (djazuhl.net) is a prominent South African DJ with Beat Bangaz (beatbangaz.net), a DJ collective in Cape Town. He was born and raised in Cape Town and has been involved in the Hip-Hop community in Cape Town since the 1980s.
DJ Azuhl started out breakdancing with the legendary Breaking crew Brasse Vannie Kaap (BVK). He’s a co-founder of the Beat Bangaz DJ Academy and Beat Bangaz Radio. He also works with Hip Hop Education South Africa.
In this interview, DJ Azuhl talks about the early years of Hip-Hop in Cape Town, especially during the years that South Africa was under apartheid rule. DJ Azuhl also shares his perspective on DJing and Hip-Hop culture in South Africa, and the art form of the Hip-Hop DJ. Cape Town’s old-school artists are often heavily involved in mentoring young Hip-Hop heads, and DJ Azuhl talks about the importance of reaching back and giving back to the culture.
05/09/2022 • 37 minutes 44 seconds
HHAP Ep76: FOKN Bois on Satire and Music as Social Commentary
Ghanaian hip hop duo FOKN Bois use satire to convey important social commentary on religion, politics, and sexuality. In this episode, they share their experiences and the thoughts that have gone into music and the messages they deliver.
The duo talks about their decision to rap and write in Pidgin English, which they say stems from needing to “express more of self” to reach their own people. For them, rapping and writing in Pidgin English “brought a new sense of freedom and originality”.
Wanlov and M3nsa also discuss their reputations for being rebellious and the need to incorporate humor into their conscious rhymes; and how they sneak “difficult conversations” into their comedic rhyme schemes to reduce resistance to the message that they come to deliver to their people. As Wanlov the Kubolor exclaims: “It’s extremely cathartic to be able to turn your problems into laughter”. Additionally, in responding to student questions, FOKN Bois share with the students their creative process
05/04/2022 • 51 minutes 5 seconds
HHAP EP. 75: Skilled Rhymes and the Bordertowns on the Volta: Ghana’s Keeny Ice
In this episode of The Hip-Hop in Africa Podcast, we interview Ghanaian Hip-Hop artist Keeny Ice, from the bordertown of Aflao in the Volta Region of Ghana. Keeny Ice, whose lyrics are fast-paced, and rhymes complex, mixes languages, but primarily raps in Ewe. The talented lyricist joins us for part of our special spring podcast series with Words Beats & Life.
Keeny Ice is online at:
The episode was produced by Kilimanjaro Studios in Beltsville, MD
08/03/2022 • 40 minutes 56 seconds
HHAP Ep. 74: Fid Q on Hip Hop, Language, & Culture in Tanzania
In this episode of Hip-Hop in Africa Podcast, have a long-awaited interview with Tanzanian artist, Fid Q. The conversation begins with a discussion of Fid Q’s legacy in Tanzanian Hip-Hop and his impact on the genre. We discuss his connection to Tanzanian youth and his impact on his music as he relates to his listeners on a deeper level. The conversation continues to discuss his previous projects that have been influential to his career and how he plans to move forward with similar Hip-Hop projects.
We also discuss the future of Tanzanian Hip-Hop, his collaborations, and his thought process behind collaborating with the various artists he worked with. Fid Q also touches on how he pays homage to legendary MCs in the pioneering Hip-Hop group Kwanza Unit. He explains his perspective on the differences between the older generation of MCs versus the younger generation.
The discussion continues onto the controversy surrounding languages used in the Tanzanian music industry. This moves the i
08/12/2021 • 42 minutes 32 seconds
HHAP Ep 73: A Discussion on Race and Identity in South African Hip Hop
In part 2 of our conversation with Dr. Sipho Sithole, he discusses the regional differences in South African hip hop. He talks about the hip hop scenes in Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg. He also discusses the linguistic differences in South African hip hop and the role ethnic identity plays in the styles and languages artists utilize. He also looks at the evolution of pop music in South Africa, from kwaito, to gqom, to amapiano.
Sipho also discusses the dynamics within Coloured communities in South Africa, and the relationships between Black and Coloured South Africans. He provides history of the origins of Coloured South Africans among the Khoi & San (first nation) communities, and their forming close-knit communities. The hip hop that came out of those communities, largely based in Cape Town, addressed the social ills happening in the Coloured townships. In looking at the divisions between Black and Coloured South Africans, we compare it to the relationships between Africa
12/11/2021 • 34 minutes 37 seconds
HHAP Ep 72: A Conversation on South African Popular Music with Sipho Sithole, p. 1
Dr. Sipho Sithole is a Research Fellow at the Johannesburg Institute for Advanced Study (University of Johannesburg) and holds a PhD in Anthropology, a B.Sc in Political Science and International Relations, and an M. Sc in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management. Dr. Sithole’s research revolves around language identity, culture, migration, and integration. Sithole has a long career in hip hop & is the founder and owner of an important and multi-award-winning music production house, Native Rhythms Productions, & Native Rhythms Records.
Sithole has is credited for helping mainstream hip-hop in South Africa when he signed Skwatta Kamp in 2003, the first group to achieve platinum sales. He held what he says is the 1st African hip hop summit in 2005 He is also a producer, winning awards for his production work on Thandiswa Mazwai’s debut album, Zabalaza (2004).
In this interview, he talks about his involvement in the growing hip hop scene in South Africa in the early 200
04/10/2021 • 54 minutes 11 seconds
HHAP EP 71: Multiple Diaspora Cultural Experiences Influencing the Creativity of Sampa the Great
Born in Zambia, Sampa the Great lived in the United States, Australia, and Botswana. With multiple African and Diaspora experiences, her music and style are very Pan African. Her work is Pan African in a very organic way. It does not claim to be conscious or preach about Pan Africanism, it just is. Because of this, as a listener, there is joy in listening to music that speaks to our multicultural Black identities. In this interview, she talks about existing as a Black person in different cultural spaces and her interactions across the continent and in the Diaspora.
Sampa the Great also talks about her experiences with racism and self-identification while studying in the US in the early 2010s, and later after she moved to Australia. She also talks about the differences between racism in the US and racism in Australia. She delves into the differences in the social unity of Black people in the US and in Australia, where in the US there is a division between Black immigrants and multi-ge
04/08/2021 • 54 minutes 11 seconds
HHAP Ep 70: Xidus Pain on the UK rap scene and being a hip hop educator
Xidus Pain is a Zimbabwean artist who grew up in the UK. He’s based in London MC who has been involved and influenced by the UK hip hop scene since he was a young kid. He currently works in schools, universities, communities centers, and prisons as a hip-hop educator. He's been doing this for over ten years. As an artist, he has worked with musicians from around the world from members of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to Rap Legend Special Ed.
Xidus Pain is also a Director at Beat This, a community-based organization that works with young people in London, and a manager with Generation HipHop UK, a global empowerment and development program. He connected with The Hip Hop Africa via Hip Hop Loves, a hip-hop NGO that works with hip-hop artists and activists globally.
In this episode, we have a great conversation w
01/07/2021 • 1 hour 2 minutes 7 seconds
HHAP EP. 69: Industry Vet Buddha Blaze on the nature of the music industry in Kenya and Beyond
Buddha Blaze is a Kenyan blogger, podcaster, and music industry insider with over 20 years of experience. He has worked throughout the continent and the diaspora with artists and producers from around the world. He was a major part of the British Council’s WaPi (Words & Pictures) initiative, which showcased hip hop, poetry, fashion breakdance, and graffiti culture in Nairobi. He has also consulted numerous artists in the business and worked on several projects with international artists and producers.
A major figure in the Kenyan hip hop scene, he was recently seen on the Nairobi-based What’s Good Africa?, the only show on P. Diddy’s RevoltTV to focus on hip hop culture in Africa and one of the only shows airing on a US network to focus on hip hop culture in Africa.
In this conversation, Buddha Blaze talks a lot about the changes he’s seen in the industry over the years and some of the skills artists need to navigate the industry today. He also talks about his involvement in the
05/06/2021 • 51 minutes 9 seconds
HHAP Ep. 68: Edem, On Navigating the Music Industry in Ghana
In this episode, Ghanaian hip hop & hiplife artist Edem talks about the music industry in Ghana and the popularity of Afrobeats. Edem also talks about the presence of Ghanaian and Nigerian artists in shaping Black popular music globally, especially in the US and the UK. He also talks about how Ghanians have always done music according to their own rules, creating genres and trends like highlife, hiplife, and azonto; and innovating hip hop and Afrobeats.
We also talk about being Ewe and why language and identity are important in his work. Coming from Ghana's Volta region, he's one of the first hip hop artist to begin rapping in Ewe.
Edem's music is a mix of hip hop, hiplife, and dancehall. He released his 1st album, Volta Regime in 2009, followed by 2 more albums and the recent EP Mood Swings released last year. Throughout his career he's collaborated with several international artists, and has won and/or been been nominated for several music awards, including the Black Canadian
11/05/2021 • 45 minutes 19 seconds
HHAP EP. 67: Yugen Blakrok on Spirituality & the Spectrums of Human Experience Found in Her Music
Yugen Blakrok doesn't incorporate hip hop's boom-bap style, she has no interest in being the Queen of SA rap, she does not do trap, and she is not interested in being boxed into someone's idea of a conscious MC. Her music has been described as “a mix of sci-fi soundscapes & meditative melodies”. It's definitely introspective and speaks to you on several levels. It blends references to places, times, & themes both inside and outside of South Africa and contains spiritual references that borrow from diverse spiritual systems. Yugen Blakrok was born in the Eastern Cape and later moved to Johannesburg, the heart of South Africa’s music industry. She released her 1st album Return of the Astro-Goth in 2013 and her second album, Anima Mysterium, which contains a cameo by Kool Keith in 2019. In 2018, she featured on the track “Opps” with Vince Staples & Kendrick Lamar on the Black Panther soundtrack.
In this interview, she engages in thought-provoking dialogue with our students
23/04/2021 • 1 hour 9 minutes 3 seconds
HHAP Ep. 66: Kanyi Mavi, and the cultural & Political significance of Doing Hip Hop in Xhosa
Kanyi Mavi is a Cape Town-based lyricist who is well respected for her creative use of Xhosa to create powerful hip-hop verses. She sometimes raps and vocalizes over Xhosa instrumentals, introducing hip hop to Xhosa culture in a way the really raises the bar. Her music also speaks to important social issues like sexual harassment, domestic violence, and drug abuse. She released her first album, Iintombi-Zifikile, in 2012, and in 2020 she released both an EP, Khon’ba, and a full album, Igubu Lam.
In this interview, she talks to the students about her music and the importance of bringing her culture into hip hop. She also talks about the use of Xhosa in the film Black Panther! She also talks about hip hop culture in South Africa, and the linguistic diversity in the various hip hop scenes across South Africa, as well as the impact of the industry on artistic creativity.
As one of the most well-known Xhosa rappers in South Africa, she takes the messages in her music very seriously. She
10/04/2021 • 1 hour 10 minutes 50 seconds
HHAP EP. 65: Sugar Emcee on the History and Dynamics of Kenya’s Hip Hop Industry
Sugar joins the conversations with students in the Hip Hop in Africa class from her home in Nairobi. She was born in Nairobi and grew up in Kiambu, just outside of Nairobi. After signing a deal with Phoenix Records in 2007, she would release three albums. While not new to the hip hop scene in Kenya, she is an underground artist who talks about navigating Kenya's entertainment industry. Nairobi has been praised for going through what some call a cultural renaissance as the music and arts scenes are gaining international attention. Sugar talks about being in the midst of that scene and navigating that scene as a woman.
20/03/2021 • 45 minutes 1 second
HHAP EP. 64: Minista of Agrikulcha (MOA) on the African presence in U.S. hip hop
This episode features a conversation with Ghana's Minista of Agrikulcha (MOA). The multilingual, transnational MOA was born in Ghana, but lived in the Ivory Coast for several years. In the Ivory Coast he was part of that country's hip hop scene in the 1980s and 1990s. He moved to the US for college in the early 2000s, where he got involved in the undergraduate rap scene. He released his first album, Travelwyze in 2004, as a member of the rap duo Ambassadoz with fellow member Akan.
In this interview, we talked about his experience in the U.S., especially in the early 2000s when there were several Ghanaian MCs in the US at the same time. We talked about his experience in the industry and his work with Nomadic Wax and his past appearances at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival. We also spoke about the importance of language and incorporating different languages in his lyrics. We also touched out the influence of African MCs in US hip hop.
MOA is on IG at https://www.instagram.com
This is the first in a special series of episodes being recorded lives with African Studies students at Howard University and George Washington University. The series is co-hosted with Words Beas & Life, who is also live-streaming the episodes on their Facebook page (facebok.com/wordsbeatslife) on Wednesday nights at 5pm EST. The schedule is on our website at hiphopafrican.com.
A part of the “born free” generation, Gigi Lamayne grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa after the fall of apartheid. She graduated from Wits University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Media and Anthropology in the midst of the #FeesMustFall movement. Rapping since high school, she released the powerful track “Fees Will Fall” just months after graduation. Considered one of South Africa’s best lyricists, her music addresses topics like Black pride, gender-based violence, feminism, sexism, and the shadiness within the music industry. We first interviewed Gigi Lamayne in 2017. She has continued to find main
18/02/2021 • 51 minutes 5 seconds
HHAP Ep. 62: Sensai T8 and The HIPHOCALYPSE Fort-Knights Podcast
HIPHOCALYPSE Fort-Knights was a radio show first produced on the campus of Rhodes University in South Africa in 1999, and made available on podcasting platforms in 2006. The podcast ran for about three years, releasing more than 20 episodes, some of which can still be heard on Podomatic. HIPHOCALYPSE Fort-Knights was the first regularly produced podcast on African hip hop. The show was the only place to get a variety of music from MCs across Africa, featuring early music from artists like Blitz the Ambassador, HHP, K’Naan, M.anifest, Modenine, and Yugen Blakrok. The show was also pioneering in that it played hip hop from all over Africa, from major hip hop scenes like South Africa to lesser-known hip hop scenes like Equatorial Guinea. The show was on podcasting platforms before most hip hop artists in Africa had a solid social media presence, and before podcasting became part of hip hop culture. While today there are streaming services, like Planet Earth Planet Rap (PEPR) Radio, there
01/02/2021 • 33 minutes 44 seconds
HHAP Ep. 61: An African Hip Hop Palaver
In this palaver, we have a lively chat with Ghanaian hip hop/hiplife scholar Dr. Nii Kotei Nikoi. We talked about the hiplife and hip hop music industry in Ghana, especially one of the country's most popular artist's Sarkodie. Nii discusses the structure of Ghana's music industry, the way artists construct their images, and the role of class (and language) in Ghana's popular music scene. We also get into an interesting conversation around collaborations between African and Diaspora artists in Beyonce’s Black is King project and the depictions of Africa in the Black Panther film.
Nii Kotei Nikoi is an assistant professor of Global Media and Digital Studies at The College of Wooster in Ohio. He studies African popular culture, and has a special focus on how popular culture reinforces and challenges existing ideas around race, gender, and sexuality. His work is influenced by his background in graphic design and documentary photography. Currently, his research exa
10/12/2020 • 1 hour 26 minutes 20 seconds
HHAP Episode 60: The Dope Saint Jude Episode
Dope Saint Jude is a South African hip hop artist who was born and raised Cape Town. A former Political Science student at the University of Cape Town, she started her hip hop career in 2011 as a drag king. Her drag king persona was Saint Dude, and resembled rapper Lil Wayne. After releasing several singles, Dope Saint Jude’s first EP, Reimagine, was released in 2016, Her second project, Resilient, was released in 2018. It included the song "Grrrl Like”, which opens this episode and has been one of her biggest hits. The song was also featured in the teaser for the Netflix original series Blood & Water https://youtu.be/OV9Ma4F_xyA. Dope Saint Jude has also performed at Afropunk, been featured in Vogue & Marie Claire, and been part of major advertising campaigns.
In this conversation we discuss the social relevance of her music. Well versed in the politics of intersectionality, Dope Saint Jude is very intentional in what she does. In her music she weaves intersecting identities
01/10/2020 • 45 minutes 17 seconds
HHAP EPISODE 59: Moonaya on Dakar’s hip hop collectives, hip hop Pan Africanism, & Western imperialism in Africa.
Moonaya is an extremely talented MC in one of the strongest hip hop scenes in the world. A Pan Africanist, her background represents her political views. Moonaya is originally from Benin, but she grew up in Senegal. While her father is Senegalese, her mother is Togolese, and one of her grandmothers was Nigerian. She grew up in a musical home where she heard a range of African music, as well as music from across the Diaspora. While she went to school to study law, she’s been writing hip hop music for almost 20 years. Her debut album, A Fleur 2 Mo was released in 2009. Her more recent project, the EP Petit Oiseau, was released in 2019. In 2017, she became the 1st Senegalese artist to sign with Sony.
Over the years, her music has dealt with a range of topics. In “J’déprim” (I’m Depressed) she discusses the impacts of depression, in "Il est temps” (It’s Time) she talks about Pan Africanism and Black liberation, and in the song “Qui” (Who?) she samples Malcolm X’s speech and talks about
01/09/2020 • 59 minutes 13 seconds
Hip Hop African Podcast Episode 58: The Tanzanian and Diaspora Artists Behind The Lounge Tanzania Mixtape
The Lounge Tanzania Mixtape Volume 1 is a project that brings together Tanzanian and Diaspora singers, rappers, and poets. The project features artists that are internationally known, as well as artists just starting their careers.
In this conversation with seven of the artists, we talk about the evolution of the project and how the project reflects hip hop and popular culture in Tanzania. We also discussed the message the project sends to the music industry in Tanzania, which has tended to only promote one style of music.
We talked about the collaboration between English and Swahili performing artists, the lack of East Africa representation in recent projects like Black Panther and the Lion King, and how this project shows East Africa's engagement in Pan African projects as well.
The seven artists interviewed in this episode are
Mike Tareto/IG: @miketareto
Joe Legendary/IG: @joelegendary
Fete Jen/IG: fete_jen
Ronny aka Ty Charls/IG: @ronnycharl
13/08/2020 • 1 hour 7 minutes 43 seconds
HHAP Episode 57: Octopizzo on Hip Hop, Refugees, and POlice Brutality in Kenya
An MC, activist, and actor, Octopizzo was born in Nairobi, in the notorious Kibera slums, one of the largest slums in the world. His mixtape and album releases include: The Come Up V 1 (2008; Mixtape), El Classico (2014; Mixtape), Chocolate City (2014; album), LDPC (2015; album), Refugeenius (2016, album), and Next Year (2018; album).
He addresses a lot of social issues, including poverty, ethnic tensions, corruption, and the legalization of marijuana. He is also one of the few MCs to seriously and consistently address the issues around refugees. Kenya is home to a lot of refugees from surrounding conflicts, including people fleeing violence in the Congo, Sudan and Somalia.
On the album Refugeenius he collaborated with 20 Refugees from Kakuma & Dadaab Refugee camps in Kenya.
Octopizzo is the founder of the youth group Y.G.B. (Young, Gifted, and Black), which is a collective of MCs, poets, graffiti artists, graphic artists, and dancers. He founded his not-for-profit Octopizzo Fou
15/06/2020 • 55 minutes 53 seconds
HHAP Episode 56: Lord Ekomy Ndong on Gabonese Hip-Hop & French Politics
Lord Ekomy Ndong, has been a leading voice in the African hip hop scene since 1990, when he founded the Gabonese group Movaizhaleine. Movaizhaleine's 1999 debut album was Mission Mbeng. He released his 1st solo album, L’Afrikain, in 2003. It is considered by many to be a hip-hop classic. Over his career, he has done collaborations with several artists, and released numerous studio albums.
Around the time of the 2009 elections in Gabon, Lord Ekomy Ndong released the singles “300”, “809” and “Engongol” (What a Shame). The songs were critical of both corruption in Africa, and of France’s controversial presence in Africa.
In 2011, with his 11th studio album, Ibogaine, he once again took shots at France. In the song “Questoins Noires” (Black Questions), he talks directly to French President Nicholas Sarkozy about France’s military presence in Africa. His 2017 album, La Théorie Des Cordes (A Theory of Cords), he reflects on the global protests that took place in the Gabonese diaspora aro
25/05/2020 • 41 minutes 22 seconds
Mixtape: In the Pocket: South Africa’s Spittas
South Africa is almost indisputably leading the pack right now in terms of quality hip-hop music produced on the continent. South African rappers, more so than any other African rappers I’ve researched, have that distinct level of lyrical ability and production quality which makes hip-hop great. In an article highlighting some of the top African Hip-hop artists, Joey Akan says that “the power of hip-hop lies in the South of the continent, as rappers from South Africa continue to drive the pulse of the culture. Much of the hip-hop in South Africa is derived from Western beats and samples mixed with localized rhythms and accents and drives the urban culture of the continent.” As I dove into the discography of different South African artists, I could almost immediately identify an American hip-hop song that I felt it paralleled. Some artists rapped over more mainstream style beats, whether it’s upbeat with African drums or bouncy r&b vibes. Most artists in this mix rap in their native
26/04/2020 • 5 minutes 43 seconds
Hip Hop and Chill with Ife, Fatima and Itohan
This is an episode of Hip Hop & Chill with Ife, Fatima and Itohan. In this episode, we discuss Falz The Bad Guy's latest album, Moral Instruction (2019). We will discussing three songs from the album, and giving our opinion on this wonderful album.
23/04/2020 • 23 minutes 44 seconds
Hip Hop Hour: Review of God Decides by Tellaman
This is an episode of Hip Hop Hour with Teg and Liam. In this episode they review the album God Decides by South African artist Tellaman.
Tellaman’s music can be found at:
Apple Music: music.apple.com/us/album/god-decides/1446885934
23/04/2020 • 16 minutes 44 seconds
HHAP EPISODE 55: HIP HOP PALAVER, V.2
This is a special episode of the Hip Hop African Podcast. It is a collaboration between the HHA Podcast and the Global Hip Hop Exchange (GHHE), which is an online network/community of hip hop creatives who are primarily from, or based in, Africa.
This is our second hip-hop palaver, with hip-hop creatives from around the continent. This time we continued the reflection on the COVID19 from the perspective of parenting. We also discussed hip-hop collaborations. Some that we had been a part of, and some that we are currently working on.
The discussion included members of the Global Hip Hop Exchange, all of whom have been involved in hip hop culture in their respective countries for several years:
2. Hustlajay Mau Mau/@Jay_maumau| Hustlajay MauMau is a socially conscious MC from Mombasa, Kenya. He raps mostly in Swahili, and has made a name for himself by not only rapping about social issues, but also getting involved in social and political issues in Kenya. He is currently based in
17/04/2020 • 1 hour 8 minutes 17 seconds
HHAP: Episode 54: A conversation with MC Jahi from Enemy Radio
The HHAP's conversation with Jahi from Enemy Radio.
This episode features MC Jahi, who is a member of Enemy Radio with Chuck D, DJ Lord & S1W's. He is also an MC, a DJ and an educator. Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Jahi launched his professional career in 1999 as the opening artist for a show that was headlined by Public Enemy at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Soon after, he connected with Chuck D and has since worked with him on several projects. Jahi is also an educator, who has worked in K-12, university, and community classroom settings.
06/04/2020 • 56 minutes 6 seconds
HHAP EPISODE 53: Hip Hop Palaver, v.1
This is a special episode of the Hip Hop African Podcast. It is a collaboration between the HHA Podcast and the Global Hip Hop Exchange (GHHE), which is an online network/community of hip hop creatives who are primarily from, or based in, Africa.
In the first discussion, or palaver, several hip hop creatives from around the continent came together to talk about the impacts of the Corona virus on our lives, personally and creatively. The discussion also centered on income security for artists, how artists are finding ways to get through these difficult times, and how folks are feeding their creativity.
The discussion included members of the GHHE, all of whom have been involved in hip hop culture in their respective countries for several years. The roster of this, the first of what will hopefully be several, palaver is:
Dumi Right/@DumiRight | MC & Member of the veteran rap group Zimbabwe Legit | from Zimbabwe, based in the Washington, DC area |
30/03/2020 • 49 minutes 29 seconds
HHAP Episode 52: Medusa, Navigating Hip Hop in Tunisia & France
Medusa is a Tunisian artist who emerged as an MC in Tunisia’s hip hop community around the time of the Arab Spring of the 2010s. Her career as an MC has followed an interesting path, as she often found herself in the role of “conscious MC”, being one of the few women in the Tunisian hip hop community and speaking out on important social issues.
In this interview she talks about hip hop under the Arab Spring. While many talk about the role of artists in the Arab Spring, Medusa talks about the impacts of the Arab Spring on hip hop culture. She says the Arab Spring encouraged youth engagement, and that post revolution, many youth have moved into more commercial rap sounds.
She has since moved to France, where she talks about her experience in the Parisian hip hop scene and her work with a new team of creatives. We met up with Medusa during a 2019 self-funded trip to the U.S. Medusa made to promote her work and establish contacts.
During her trip, she visited the class of American Uni
18/03/2020 • 50 minutes 51 seconds
HHAP Episode 51: Roma Mkatoliki, Challenging Hip Hop Activism in Tanzania
In this episode of the Hip Hop African Podcast, we interview Tanzanian hip hop artist and activist Roma Mkatoliki about his more than a decade long career as a hip hop activist.
Roma Mkatoliki has always been known for producing music that addresses social and political issues, beginning with his first single "Tanzania", which he released in 2007. The song was highlighted in the 2012 scholarly article Hip Hop as Social Commentary in Accra and Dar es Salaam.
In April 2017, Roma and some of his colleagues disappeared for 3 days. This incident has put Roma at direct odds with the government. More recently, in November 2019, Roma released the single “Anaitwa Roma”, which was a direct criticism of government policies. </
13/02/2020 • 38 minutes 20 seconds
HHAP Episode 50: The Mixtape Episode P. 2
This episode is our second mixtape episode. The episode features the most recent works of 23 of Africa's fiercest lyricists. All of songs featured on this episode were released in 2018 and 2019, and features women from across Africa, and African women who reside in the Diaspora. Some of the artists are fairly well known to followers of African hip hop scenes, while others are more up & coming. Some of the artists, like Burni Aman, EJ von Lyrik, and Jean Grae have been active for two decades. Others are new to the game, and quickly making a name for themselves. They also are diverse in their styles and the languages they rap in. The artists also differ in terms of content, some of the songs offer social commentary, some are displays of braggadicio, and some are simply about having a great time. The common thread is that they all represent some of the best lyricists out today.
It was important that all of the artists and songs in this episode be submitted and voted on by serious hi
01/01/2020 • 42 minutes 7 seconds
HHAP EPISODE 49: Mikko, on Being a Hip Hop Journalist and Curator of The Planet’s Rap
In this episode we spoke with Mikko from Planet Earth Planet Rap. Mikko has years of knowledge & experience with hip hop culture and the music industry, and it was great to get his impressions of hip hop around the world, and where some of the strongest hip hop scenes are, and who some of the artists he listens to are. He has listened to hip hop music from artists in every corner of the globe, and his experience and love of the culture has given him some great insights.
Mikko talks about the emergence of Planet Earth Planet Rap (PEPR) and their work of curating hip hop music from across the globe. He also talks about his work in South Africa with Bush Radio, a legendary hip hop station out of Cape Town, and PEPR’s current relationship with Chuck D’s And You Don’t Stop radio network.
20/12/2019 • 47 minutes 48 seconds
HHAP Episode 48: Elom 20ce on The Role of Hip Hop in the Struggle for Pan Africanism
Togolese hip hop artist Elom 20ce is a multitalented artist, activist, and Pan Africanist. He brings Pan African ideals to his music and his art, and this episode Elom discusses studying international politics and working with the United Nations, and how his studies and experiences influenced his music. After witnessing the hypocrisy around international development and politics, he felt compelled to speak on it in his music. In his music he talks about the importance of Pan Africanism and the current state of neocolonialism that many African people find themselves living in. He stressed that neocolonialism is not just about what Europeans are doing, but it is also about our lack of unity. In the interview we also discuss hip hop in Francophone Africa, and how it differs from hip hop in Anglophone Africa. Elom explains that a lot has to do with Francophone Africa’s colonial history. The French had a system of direct rule, meaning that they were much more involv
10/12/2019 • 55 minutes 28 seconds
HHAP Episode 47: Lola Monroe, Representing Ethiopia in Mainstream American Hip Hop
Model, video vixen, MC, BET Awards nominee, & reality TV star: Lola Monroe is an Ethiopian artist who has found success in the mainstream music industry in the United States. Going by many names, including Queen Roe, Lola Monroe was born Born in Ethiopia & raised in Washington, DC. She started her career in entertainment as a model & “video vixen”, and later moved to music. In 2011, she was nominated for BET's Best Female Hip Hop Artist, and she also became the first woman to join Wiz Khalifa's Taylor Gang label. Throughout her career, she’s worked with hip hop artists such as Wiz Khalifa, King Los, Trina, and others. She has also appeared in films & on TV, including the reality show, The Platinum Life on the E! network.
01/12/2019 • 28 minutes 54 seconds
HHAP Episode 46: Rwandan-Canadian MC, Shad, on the Evolution of Hip Hop
Shad is a Kenyan born, Rwandan hip hop artist, who hails from in London, Ontario, in Canada. With an eclectic sound, that blends musical influences, and a unique lyrical style, Shad made a name for himself in the Canadian hip hop scene, winning a Juno in 2010 for his 3rd album, TSOL. In addition to being an MC, Shad also hosted three seasons of the hip hop documentary series, Hip Hop Evolution, which can be seen on HBO Canada and Netflix. The series delves into the history, and evolution, of hip hop culture in the United States. In this interview we talk about Shad’s experience growing up as a Rwandan-Canadian hip hop head and MC. He talks about his career, beginning with his 1st album When This is Over (2005), to his more recent projects. He talks about the different cultural landscapes in Canada, which ultimately influences Canadi
13/11/2019 • 39 minutes 22 seconds
HHAP Episode 45: Phlow, Navigating Hip Hop & Representation in Nigeria
In this episode of The Hip Hop African Podcast, we speak with Nigerian hip hop artist, Phlow. We talk about the impact of Afropop on hip hop culture in Nigeria, and the choices artists often make between hip hop and Afropop. Speaking of Afropop, we also discuss the possible opportunities for Nigerian hip hop in the wake of one of Nigeria’s fastest growing exports: pop music.
Phlow also talks about the struggles with longevity for women in the Nigerian hip hop scene, as well as the term “femcee” and the evolution of attitudes towards the term among women artists. In the conversation Phlow discusses the media’s focus on her ascetics, especially the reference to her as a “babe that can rap” by some media outlets. She discusses the pressure within the music industry that would like her to highlight her looks as a way to market her music. Phlow also points out that it is not only within hip hop that she experience
01/10/2019 • 44 minutes 43 seconds
HHAP Episode 44: From Gabon to the US: Ya Minko on his Experiences in American Hip Hop Culture
Gabonese artist Ya Minko came by campus for a conversation about his experiences in hip hop communities in Gabon and the United States. We had a long discussion on hip hop culture and the business of hip hop. Every artist has to decide how to market themselves, how to speak to their audience, and how to navigate the politics of the music industry.
Ya Minko spoke to us days before his presentation at the Apple Carnegie store in downtown Washington, DC. Where he performed his song “Tired” during a workshop on hip hop lyricism.
Ya Minko can be found on social media
02/09/2019 • 52 minutes 51 seconds
HHAP Episode 43: Hip Hop and Activism in Post-Apartheid South Africa, Part 2
This is part 2 of a 2 part conversation with hip hop scholar and University of Cape Town Professor Adam Haupt and hip hop artist Bradley Lodewyk (aka b-boy King Voue) from the group Brasse Vannie Kaap, or BVK. We met up at the University of Cape Town while they were working on their book project, Neva Again: Hip Hop Art, Activism, and Education in Post-Apartheid South Africa, and EP In the Key of B. The book and EP can be accessed at https://www.hsrcpress.ac.za/books/neva-again. The book was edited by Adam Haupt, Quentin Williams, H Samy Alim & Emile Jansen. The #IntheKeyofB EP was produced by Adam and Bradley and features Cape Flats MCs and vocalists, such as Nadine Matthews-Nunes, Naftali Solomons, Eavesdrop, Shameema Williams (ex Godessa), Natasha C. Tafari, Emile YX? (Black Noise, Heal the Hood), Amy Brown, Imie Vannie Delf, Dirtypro Agape Tadana, Stefan Benting, Razeen Haupt, Nathan Lodewyk, Zama J
21/08/2019 • 43 minutes 17 seconds
HHAP Episode 42: Hip Hop and Activism in Post-Apartheid South Africa, Part 1
This is part 1 of a 2 part conversation with hip hop scholar and University of Cape Town Professor Adam Haupt and hip hop artist Bradley Lodewyk (aka b-boy King Voue) from the group Brasse Vannie Kaap, or BVK. We met up at the University of Cape Town while they were working on their book project, Neva Again: Hip Hop Art, Activism, and Education in Post-Apartheid South Africa, and EP In the Key of B. The book and EP can be accessed at https://www.hsrcpress.ac.za/books/neva-again. The book was edited by Adam Haupt, Quentin Williams, H Samy Alim & Emile Jansen. The #IntheKeyofB EP was produced by Adam and Bradley and features Cape Flats MCs and vocalists, such as Nadine Matthews-Nunes, Naftali Solomons, Eavesdrop, Shameema Williams (ex Godessa), Natasha C. Tafari, Emile YX? (Black Noise, Heal the Hood), Amy Brown, Imie Vannie Delf, Dirtypro Agape Tadana, Stefan Benting, Razeen Haupt,
The DJ, producer, or beat maker is an important element in hip hop. The beat is the first thing we hear when a song starts, and it is the first clue that our favorite song is about to come on. Hip hop producers usually work with several artists, and some of the more well known producers have their signature styles. In Nigeria, one of those producers is Teck-Zilla, as well as other producers in the Str8buttah camp. Teck-Zilla is a hip hop producer and co-founder of Str8buttah, a hip hop collective that consists of several producers and MCs. In this episode Teck-Zilla talks with us about his own career & influences, the beginnings of Str8buttah, and his approach to beat production.
Teck-Zilla has a distinct style. Listen to his beats on his BandCamp page and you will hear his diverse musical influences, from soul and R&B, to Afrobeat, to hip hop. After DJing a breakdance battle in Nigeria, Teck-Zilla produced an entire mixtape of break beats, B-Boy Zilla (A B-Boy Breaks EP) in
17/07/2019 • 32 minutes 23 seconds
HHAP EPISODE 40: Modenine Shares His Views on Hip-Hop Culture and Industry in Nigeria
The second episode of our month of Nigerian hip hop is a conversation with hip hop legend, Modenine. Modenine’s hip hop career began in the 1990s, and he has produced over 10 albums and mixtapes. Currently based in England, he talks about the early days of hip hop in Nigeria, as well as the experiences that influenced his entry into hip hop culture.
Modenine discusses the history of hip hop in Nigeria and the diversity you find across Nigeria. He also has strong views on the direction that hip hop is going in, as well as the music industry in Nigeria. This includes an interesting discussion on how Nigerian artists are treated compared to U.S. artists, and how some U.S. and Nigerian artists have handled that unequal treatment.
Modenine also retells his experience in Nigeria with WaPi (Words and Pictures), a program through the British Council that promoted hip hop culture through the British Council in several countries.
He also explains grime music! Grime a genre of music related t
12/07/2019 • 38 minutes 13 seconds
HHAP EPISODE 39: Rap Radio’s Bionic on Hip-Hop in Nigeria
The first episode of our month of Nigerian hip hop focuses on the Lagos-based internet radio station, Rap Radio Africa with Ikenna Mbah aka Bionic. Rap Radio Africa is one of the first hip hop, African internet radio stations. The station is dedicated to playing all hip hop, all the time. Most of the hip hop they play comes from across the continent.
The conversation covers several topics, including the history of Rap Radio Africa and Bionic’s experiences in the Nigerian hip hop scene. Bionic discusses the programming on Rap Radio Africa, and how that came about, especially via connections with U.S. based artists like Chuck D from Public Enemy. Rap Radio Africa has partnerships with other internet-based hip hop programs, which helps diversify their content and gets their content heard on other platforms.
Bionic also discusses the differences between hip hop and the pop music industry in Nigeria. Nigerian pop music (Davido, Wizkid, P Square, etc..) is often labeled hip hop, which can
01/07/2019 • 22 minutes 41 seconds
HHAP Episode 38: Keko on Hip-Hop V. The Politics of Sexuality in Uganda
Keko is a Ugandan MC and filmmaker who became involved in Uganda’s hip hop scene over than 10 years ago. Her career eventually took her to international audiences, in Africa and in Europe, and included a 2012 deal with Sony. In our conversation, Keko discusses some of the challenges she experienced while living in Uganda. Those challenges revolved around her gender, her sexuality, her international recognition, and her 2012 deal with Sony. We discuss the impact of patriarchy and homophobia on her ability to live and to work. Keko is now living in Toronto and is pursuing a career in filmmaking. Keko insists that she is not trying to be an activist, and is definitely not anyone’s “poster child” for gay rights in Uganda. However, Keko’s music, films, and her coming out are her unapologetically living her life. As a Ugandan woman, she is also using her own lens & perspective to contribute her voice as a creative.
Keko is on Twitter at @KEKOTOWN
Her film works can be found on VIMEO at
03/06/2019 • 24 minutes 47 seconds
HHAP Episode 37: Mohamed Benloulou on hip-hop, politics, & (Black) liberation in Algeria
Mohamed Amine Benloulou is an Algerian hip hop scholar & beat maker based in Algiers. This interview took place in April, in the midst of protests in Algeria calling for the stepping down of the president and his government. Mohamed spoke about the history of hip hop in Algeria, historical connection between Algeria and Black liberation movements in the US, the influence of hip hop in historical and contemporary social movements in Algeria, and the role of racial and ethnic identities in Algerian hip hop.
Mohamed also discusses research on the connection between the Battle of Algiers film and hip hop, as well as cultural diplomacy and hip hop, as well as challenges around hip hop studies in Algeria.
Mohamed’s Soundcloud page: soundcloud.com/mohamedaminebenloulou Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DJAMINE47beatmaker/
The episode features the song “Allo le Système!” by Algerian emcee Raja Meziane. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-ajCGiDlrg (w/English subtitles).
09/05/2019 • 33 minutes 9 seconds
HHAP Episode 36: Blitz the Ambassador on His Art, Purpose, & Representation
It’s been 15 years since Blitz the Ambassador released his first record, Soul Rebel. Since then he has gone on to produce 7 additional albums, start his own independent label (Embassy MVMT), produce 2 short films, and produced the feature film The Burial of Kojo, which was released on Netflix on the 31st of March, with Ava DuVernay and ARRAY.
This interview took place after he screened his film at the New African Film Festival this past March in Silver Spring, Maryland. It was great to sit down again with Blitz, 12 years after I first interviewed him for allAfrica.com in May 2007. Then, he was among the first generation of African MCs making their presence known on the underground scene in the US. In that interview we spoke about how Pan African his music was, and how lyrically, he blended elements of African and the Diaspora. His music has evolved into a showcase of African and Diaspora influences, including collaborations with artists from across Africa and the Diaspora.
In this i
01/04/2019 • 32 minutes 20 seconds
HHAP Episode 35: From Queens to Dar: Fete Jen on Hip Hop & Lyricist Lounge Tanzania
This was a fun conversation with hip hop organizer Fete Jen, a Queens, NY native who has traveled throughout Africa and is connected to multiple hip hop artists and scenes around the world. She started Lyricist Lounge Tanzania (LLT) in 2014, helping to provide a platform for poets, spoken word artists, and MCs in Dar es Salaam. LLT was distinct for several reasons, most notably, it brought together a diverse crowd of Tanzanians, African American & Caribbean expats living in Tanzania, and expats from other African countries living in Tanzania. A lot of this diversity was due to the diverse team that have organized the LL events.
LLT is celebrating its fifth anniversary on the 23rdof March, in Dar es Salaam. The organizers have established a fundraiser to help with the costs of putting on the event and bringing in artists to perform.
Through her networks with hip hop communities in the Diaspora and throughout Africa, Fete Jen has been involved in or helped to establish several h
01/03/2019 • 31 minutes 40 seconds
HHAP Episode 34: Reggie Rockstone on the Pan African connections with Ghanaian Hiplife & Hip Hop Culture
Reggie Rockstone is one of the pioneers of hiplife in Ghana. In this conversation, he discusses how as a Pan Africanist, his perspective influenced his participation in hip hop culture in Ghana. He talks about the importance of popularizing the use of African languages through music, and how he helped to popularize the use of Twi in Ghanaian hiplife and hip hop. He discusses the importance of African languages in reaffirming pride, breaking colonial mentalities, and bridging class divides. Reggie Rockstone also talks about his own Pan Africanist upbringing, and the impact of his Diaspora experiences, as well as those of his father and African American mother.
The episode begins with Reggie Rockstone’s song “Proactive” and ends with his song “Woso”, both on his 2010 album Reggiestration, which is available on iTunes https://itunes.
02/02/2019 • 37 minutes 38 seconds
HHAP Episode 33: The Evolution of M.anifest, from “Immigrant Chronicles” to “God MC”
In this interview M.anifest talks about his return to Ghana and his experiences in both the US and Ghana. As an artist whose music reflects Ghanaian, African, and Diaspora experiences and cultures, M.anifest brings an important level of intellectual complexity to hip hop culture. When I point these things out in the interview, M.anifest says that he does not want to “be an alternative to the mainstream, but to be an alternative in the mainstream”. In the interview M.anifest talks about how his return (& his experiences in both the US and Ghana) has been reflected in his music. He discusses the music industries & creative scenes in the US and in Ghana, African MCs in the US hip hop scene, his impact on the hip hop & music scene in Ghana, and his collaborations with other artists, including the late South African hip hop artist, Hip Hop Pantsula (HHP).
In this episode we begin with a look back, musically, at Manifest’s career. We begin with the song “Africa Represent” from
01/01/2019 • 36 minutes 48 seconds
HHAP Episode 32: Wakazi Bringing Bilingual & Bicultural Elements to Tanzanian Hip-Hop Culture
Wakazi is a bilingual Tanzanian hip hop artist. He grew up in Dar es Salaam, but spent several years in the United States, where he was active in the Chicago hip hop scene. Like many MCs who spend several years abroad, when he returned to Tanzania he had to prove himself on the local scene. He was able to craft his brand, largely by harnessing the power of social media. In this interview, Wakazi talks about his experiences in Chicago, with the local hip hop scene and how his experiences there have impacted his career. He discusses his return to Tanzania, the reception he faced on his return, and how has managed to build his career. Wakazi, who is fluent in English and Swahili, also talks about multilingualism, and the use of other Tanzanian languages in hip hop. Wakazi also reflects on some of the struggles within the hip hop community, some of which he feels is largely due to a lack of mentorship by the first generation of Tanzanian hip hop artists. He also discusses perceptions &
20/12/2018 • 48 minutes 20 seconds
HHAP Episode 31: Wachata Crew on Graffiti & Hip Hop Culture in Tanzania
Wachata Crew is the biggest, and oldest graffiti crew in Tanzania. With more than a decade of experience, the members of Wachata Crew are established and respected members of the hip hop scene in Tanzania. The members of Wachata are Local Fanatics, Kala Singa, Medi, and Mejah.
We met up at their studios at Nafasi Art Space (nafasiartspace.org) in Dar es Salaam and talked about graffiti culture in Tanzania. We discussed the origins of Wachata Crew with WAPI (Words and Pictures) at the British Council in Dar es Salaam back in 2007. Wachata Crew sheds light on how many Tanzanians see graffiti culture in Tanzania and the connections between graffiti and hip-hop culture in Tanzania.
Graffiti culture differs all over the world, the members of Wachata Crew talk about the cost and qualities of spray paint cans in Tanzania, v. other places. The artists also discuss their connections with graffiti beyond Tanzania, and the participation of women in graffiti culture in Tanzania.
You can find
10/12/2018 • 35 minutes 7 seconds
HHAP Episode 30: Hip Hop Producer Duke on Boombap & Hip Hop Production in Tanzania
This is an interview with Tanzanian hip hop producer Duke, founder of M Lab records, Tamaduni Muzik, and the Hip Hop Kilinge (cypher). The interview is mostly in SWAHILI, but we switch back & forth a lot. The Hip Hop African podcast celebrates the various elements of hip hop, but this is our first interview with a hip hop producer.
Duke talks about how he became involved in hip hop in Tanzania, his involvement with the founding of Tamaduni Muzik and the Hip Hop Kilinge (cyphers) they used to host. These cyphers used to bring hundreds of youth from around Dar es Salaam to listen to the DJs, hear MC rhyme, participate in cyphers, buy hip hop fashion made by local artists. Duke also talks about issue of copyright and the art of sampling and the role of the producer in hip hop. We also discuss sounds, the role of the boom bap sound, as well as chopping up other sounds to create a unique sound that represents Tanzanian hip hop. He also talks about the top five artists outside of Tanzan
01/12/2018 • 22 minutes 58 seconds
HHAP Episode 29: Ghanaian Hip Hop Scholar Joseph Ewoodzie on Hip Hop in the South Bronx
Ghana born, Bronx raised hip hop scholar Joseph Ewoodzie has published the book Break Beats in the Bronx: Rediscovering Hip-Hop's Early Years, a book that uncovers details of hip hop’s early years in the South Bronx. Ewoodzie’s book provides rich details of hip hop’s history in the South Bronx. In this interview he discusses his decision to write the book and touches on some of the major themes the book addresses. For example, Ewoodzie talks about the social economic environment in the South Bronx that gave rise to hip hop, environments that mirrored the environments that gave rise to hip hop in Africa.
In the interview we also cover the book’s
Discussion of the link between gang culture and hip hop
The controversies around Afrika Bambaataa
The rise and decline of the visibility of the DJ in mainstream hip hop
The connection between hip hop culture and Africa’s oral tradition
The connections between music in Africa and the Diaspora
South Bronx Ghanaian immigrants in the development o
03/11/2018 • 1 hour 2 minutes 9 seconds
HHAP Episode 28: Politics & Hip Hop from the Children of Sundiata
This episode is a conversation with Malian hip hop artist and activist Amkoullel L’enfant Peulh on hip hop and politics in Mali. Amkoullel has been involved in hip hop culture in Mali for many years, and he's been vocal about politics inside and outside of the country. Having lived in France and the United States, Amkoullel is back in Mali where he remains involved in the hip hop community. He is also involved in mentoring artists and working in TV and radio production and distribution in Mali.
A strong voice in Malian hip hop, in this conversation we discuss the political nature of Francophone rap in West Africa, specifically in Mali, Senegal, and Burkina Faso. Amkoullel traces how hip hop artists in Mali developed their own lyrical identity, based in large part on their own oral traditions and cultural identities.
In discussing the past and current political events in Mali, Amkoullel talks about the roles of artists in social change and the importance of artists representing the
05/10/2018 • 36 minutes 29 seconds
HHAP Episode 27: Laura Lora on the Politics of Gender & a Ghanaian American Identity
In this episode we speak with Ghanian-born, U.S. based artist Laura Lora. In the interview, Laura Lora talks about her experiences an artist, navigating between Ghana and the United States. Growing up in Los Angeles has definitely influenced her music and style, as she talks about being Ghanian and American. Laura Lora, who majored in Black Studies in college, also talks about her experiences in the African American community, and with the divide between Africans and Africans Americans in the United States.
Her music and work has also placed her in conversations around gender and sexuality, where she chooses to confront ideas on how African, or Ghanian women should dress and behave. In this interview she also addresses ideas of beauty and femininity, which she has also chosen to challenge.
Laura Lora is very conscious and intentional about her music, and the messages she wants to send. She is very intentional about her confrontations with gender and identity. Her most recent video
02/09/2018 • 42 minutes 27 seconds
HHAP Episode 26: Hip Hop Studies at Black Universities in the U.S.
This episode is an African Studies palaver on teaching hip hop related courses at historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). The discussion focused on approaching hip hop studies from African centered perspectives, as well the impact of those courses being taught at HBCUs on their structure and content.
Leading the discussion are hip hop professors/activists who are teaching hip hop related courses and participating in important dialogues within hip hop studies.
Greg Carr @AfricanaCarr Howard University
Tewodross Melchishua Williams Bowie State University
Jared Ball @IMIXWHATILIKE Morgan State University
Moderator: Msia Kibona Clark @kibona Howard University
The event was held at Howard University and was sponsored by the Department of African Studies and the Ralph Bunche International Affairs Center.
Music by Sa-Roc: http://sarocthemc.com | @sarocthemc | facebook.com/sarocthemc/
01/08/2018 • 1 hour 13 minutes 46 seconds
HHAP Episode 25: Klein Fortuin on Hip Hop in Mitchells Plain & Rock the Mic
This conversation with Rock the Mic winner, and Cape Town MC Klein Fortuin took place at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut in April 2018. Klein Fortuin won the Rock the Mic competition held by Heal the Hood, a Cape Town based hip hop community organization.
In the conversation Klein Fortuin talks about his career and hip hop in the Mitchells Plain township in Cape Town, South Africa, which is home to a legendary hip hop scene and the birthplace of South African hip hop. Klein Fortuin talks about what makes that township such an epicenter for hip hop culture in South Africa.
Klein Fortuin also talks about his win in Heal the Hood’s Rock the Mic competition and commercial and underground rap scenes in South Africa.
Klein Fortuin is on SoundCloud (https://soundcloud.com/klein-fortuin) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/kleinfortuin/)
01/07/2018 • 31 minutes 18 seconds
HHAP Special Episode: Hip-Hop in Africa Book Talk
This is a special episode of the Hip Hop African Podcast. This episode is a conversation between Dr. Msia Kibona Clark, the author of Hip-Hop in Africa, and moderator Dr. James Pope. Dr. Pope is a professor at Winston Salem State University and an organizer with the Africa World Now Project. The conversation took place at the legendary Sankofa Video Book and Cafe in Washington, DC. The event was sponsored by the following organizations Africa World Now Project | Africans Rising for Justice, Peace, & Dignity | Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) | Sankofa Books
If you are listing to the podcast on a platform other than the blogsite, you can access some of the images from the evening's event on our blogsite: hiphopafrican.com.
23/06/2018 • 55 minutes 18 seconds
HHAP Episode 24: Free Speech, Censorship, and Protest in China and South Africa
This podcast is the panel discussion titled "Free Speech, Censorship and Protest”, that was held at the 13th annual Trinity International Hip Hop Festival at Trinity College, in Hartford, Connecticut. The discussion addressed issues of censorship and free speech in hip hop, in both China and South Africa. The artists discussed their own careers in hip hop, and hip hop culture in their countries.
The panel featured
MC Puos, a Chinese artist based in Shanghai. He is a co-founder of Bang, China's 1st hip hop magazine, and a founding member of the hip hop collective DDM. He also launched a startup education technology company to promote hip hop culture in China, and recently released a documentary on hip hop in China.
Dana Burton (@DetroitShowtyme), an American artist based in Shanghai. After leaving Detroit for China, he became involved in the hip hop scene in China and created Iron Mike, a national rap battle that takes place in China.
Emile YX (@EmileYX), a South African artist
01/06/2018 • 49 minutes 16 seconds
HHAP Episode 23: Uganda’s Ruyonga on African/African American Relations, Black Panther, Politics, and Christianity
This interview with Ugandan artist Ruyonga, formerly known as Krukid, is an in-depth discussion on the artist’s perspective on the Black experience, relations between African Americans and Africans in America, his issues with the Black Panther film, being a Christian MC, and his perspective on laws and politics in Uganda.
Ruyonga studied in the U.S. in the early 2000s. He began rapping in Uganda before coming to the States, and he established an underground career in the U.S. and became known for his distinct sound and strong lyrical ability. After almost a decade in the US, Ruyonga returned to Uganda. He changed his name to Ruyonga and built his career as a Christian rapper.
After a long stay Ruyonga has an interesting perspective on being an African immigrant in America, and the tensions between African and African American communities. He talks about those tensions from an African immigrant perspective, and comments on the diverse racial and ethnic dynamics he saw in different par
01/05/2018 • 54 minutes 47 seconds
HHAP Episode 22: Thiat of Keur Gui on Hip Hop and Activism Beyond Senegal
In a time when hip hop culture has been under heavy criticism for the lack of political content in commercial hip hop, Keur Gui reminds us of what hip hop culture is capable of, in terms of both social commentary and political action. As founding members of the social and political movement Y’en A Marre (Enough is Enough), Keur Gui has provided heavy social commentary in their music for over 20 years. Coming out of Senegal, which is perhaps one of the most political hip hop scenes in the world, Keur Gui has used hip hop culture to engage with their audiences and to confront the state. Y’en A Marre is one of the only social movements deeply rooted in hip hop culture to effect political change. In Senegal, Y’en A Marre was involvement in mass mobilization campaigns, helped register voters, engaged in social protest, and promoted an ideology known as New Type of Senegalese (NTS). The idea behind NTS is that calls for social change go beyond requests for government action, but also rests i
02/04/2018 • 52 minutes 59 seconds
HHAP Episode 21: Yugen Blakrok on Hip Hop Lyricism & the Black Panther Project
This month we speak with Johannesburg-based MC, Yugen Blakrok. Yugen Black is a South African MC, who was recently featured on the Black Panther soundtrack. Her style is distinctive and blends several different elements together in a strong lyrical flow. Her music do not contain many of the topics often found in hip hop that is heavy with braggadocio, or sexuality. In Yugen Blakrok’s music you mind find references to her Xhosa identity, Asian martial arts (ala Wu Tang), or to Black consciousness ideas and figures. Her flows sound like layered streams of consciousness, and do not fit neatly into one adjective.
In this episode we speak with her about her music career, her unique style, her 2013 album Return of the Astro-Goth, her most recent work on the Black Panther soundtrack, and her upcoming projects.
Yugen Blakrok's first album was Return of the Astro-Goth: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/return-of-the-astro-goth/814084115
The Black Panther Soundtrack: https://itunes.apple.com/
02/03/2018 • 54 minutes 54 seconds
HHAP Episode 20: Nazlee Saif on Hip Hop, Sexuality, Race, & Protest in Cape Town
Our conversation with Cape Town based hip hop and spoken word artist Nazlee Saif centers on discussions of race, gender, religion, sexuality, and activism. This conversation centers on the use of hip hop as a cultural space within which to engage several different social issues, and to deconstruct social taboos that continue to exist within hip hop culture.
Nazlee Saif is a spoken word and hip hop artist originally from Durban, who moved to Cape Town and attended the University of Cape Town (UCT) during the height of the #RhodesMustFall movement. Nazlee, who was already a socially conscious artist, was an activist and organizer in the movement on the UCT campus. Nazlee, as a queer identified, Muslim, MC, also brings those intersecting identities into the hip hop, a culture that has historically been very patriarchal, very misogynistic, and hostile to queer voices.
In the conversation Nazlee Saif talks about several topic, including the #RhodesMustFall movement at UCT, intersectionali
01/02/2018 • 47 minutes 22 seconds
HHAP Episode 19: Quentin Williams on Multilingualism & Hip Hop in South Africa
This episode, South African hip hop scholar and sociolinguist Dr. Quentin Williams discusses his new book Remix Multilingualism: Hip Hop, Ethnography and Performing Marginalized Voice (Bloomsbury Press).
Dr. Williams is a Senior Lecturer in the Linguistics Department at the University of Western Cape. He has published papers and book chapters on the performance of multilingualism, popular cultural practices (specifically Hip Hop), agency and voice in urban multilingual spaces. In addition to the book we’ll be discussing today, he is also currently editing the book Kaapse Styles: Hip Hop Art & Activism in Cape Town, South Africa.
Dr. Williams has been writing on language and hip hop in South Africa for several years, and has extensive credibility within South Africa's well established hip hop community. Dr. Williams' research and work has also made valuable contributions to the field of linguistics.
In this interview we discuss the book, Dr. Williams research on South African
01/01/2018 • 1 hour 12 minutes 45 seconds
HHAP Episode 18: Meyniak On Hip Hop, Poetry, & Politics in Zimbabwe
This month we’re releasing a bonus episode. We interviewed Zimbabwean hip hop and spoken word artist Meyniak. He’s a young artist based in Harare and has a unique style and unconventional musical path that led him to hip hop. In this short interview, we spoke about his music, his poetry, hip hop in Zimbabwe, and the relationship between hip hop artists and the state.
5:10 I Peasant
7:43 Past you
30:58 Ma Nna
19/12/2017 • 34 minutes 11 seconds
HHAP Episode 17: Abena Rockstar on Hip Hop and the Music Industry in Ghana
Abena Rockstar is a Ghanaian hip hop artist who is known for writing hard hitting, raw hip hop lyrics. She performs mostly in Twi, and is among a small group of female artists in Ghana who’s style focuses on strong hip hop lyricism. Many female artists in Ghana choose to enter into other genres, whether it be Hiplife or gospel music. The idea that women are not supposed to be hardcore hip hop lyricists is a perspective we see throughout hip hop globally.
In this interview, we sat down at a local restaurant near Abena’s home in Tema, outside of Accra and talked about a lot of different topics. Abena Rockstar discusses the visibility of women in Ghanaian hip hop, the pressure to sing instead of rap, ideas of how women should behave, and her views on the category of “female rapper”. She also talks about her views on Hiplife, her participation in the “Gh Female Rappers Cypher” project, and the music industry in Ghana.
In 2014, Abena Rockstar released the EP “Only Few Can Relate” and in 2
02/12/2017 • 50 minutes 27 seconds
HHAP Episode 16: Wanlov the Kubolor
This month we're featuring a conversation with Ghanaian artist Wanlov the Kubolor. In the interview we talk about Wanlov the Kubolor's experiences, his music, the controversies, and his evolution into Wanlov the Kubolor, the African Gypsy.
Wanlov the Kubolor is a smart, introspective artist who is very much aware of the social relevance of his music. He often makes social commentary, whether via his music or social media, and infuses that social commentary with humor. Wanlov's humor (and he's genuinely funny) often has fans laughing before realizing that there is a message in the madness. Wanlov has detractors, people who take issue with his music or behavior. But, agree or disagree with his views, Wanlov the Kubolor is not afraid of expressing himself in unconventional ways.
Wanlov' the Kubolor's music reflects his diverse background and experiences. It is difficult to put Wanlov the Kubolor into one category of music. He is an MC, but he also blends several different sounds and sty
01/11/2017 • 51 minutes 35 seconds
HHAP Episode 15: Kanyi Mavi on Hip Hop, Xhosa, & Rap Culture in South Africa
In this episode I sit down with Kanyi Mavi, an MC out of Cape Town, South Africa. She was recently in New York City and I was able to catch up with her at the famous Red Rooster soul food restaurant in Harlem. In the interview we spoke at length about being a Xhosa-speaking hip hop artist in South Africa, as well as the politics of hip hop culture in South Africa. We also spoke about the dynamics of gender & hip hop in South Africa.
Rise (featuring Driemanskap)
Ngqangqa (prod. T.Krotkiewski)
For more information about Kanyi Mavi check her out on
01/10/2017 • 42 minutes 9 seconds
HHAP Episode 14: African (Women) MCs & Hip Hop Lyricists
This episode features the music of several MCs from across Africa. We depart from the interview format and bring you music from some of our favorite (women) MCs. This is essentially a mixtape of diverse female voices in African hip hop. These MCs live in different countries, seek different languages, and speak on diverse topics. In each of these songs, the artists performing deliver strong, hard hitting lyrics that are both classic hip hop and representative of African styles of hip hop. See the artists' social media pages for more information. Additionally, some of the artists have their work on iTunes. Those links are provided.
Moona (Senegal) “Revolution” |https://www.facebook.com/moonamusic/ | https://www.reverbnation.com/moona
OMG & Mamy Victory (Senegal) “OK” | https://www.facebook.com/omgmamyvictory/ | https://soundcloud.com/djpolthescratcheer
Eve Crazy (Senegal) “Alandouti Freestyle” | https://www.facebook.com/EVECRAZYY | https://w
01/09/2017 • 49 minutes 24 seconds
HHAP Episode 13: Tanzanian Hip Hop Artists on English Rap in Tanzania
We sat down with 2 groups of young hip hop artists in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The first interview includes Mukimala, Salma, & Catalyst. The second interview includes HIM, Victor the Traveler (who is a producer), & Sima. Both groups have completely different styles and approaches to hip hop culture. But both groups are among a new generation of Tanzanian MC’s rapping in English, instead of Swahili.
The goal of the interviews was to have a conversation about language an hip hop in Tanzania. There are so many views on the language debate, but hip hop artists in Africa have been debating it since hip hop first began being performed in Africa. Tanzania has been known for its Swahili hip hop, but there is an increasing number of young artists who feel better equipped to perform primarily in English.
The conversations also touched on a few interesting topics, including consciousness in hip hop, self censorship, gender, the use of the N word, and thoughts on the African Diaspora.
01/08/2017 • 1 hour 10 minutes 21 seconds
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 th
01/07/2017 • 0
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.facebo
01/06/2017 • 59 minutes 36 seconds
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/
01/05/2017 • 44 minutes 53 seconds
Artist Profile: Graffiti Writer Behulum
Artist Profile: Graffiti Writer Behulum (Ethiopia) at the 12th Annual Trinity International Hip Hop Festival. This is a special podcast episode recorded at the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival, by guest host Seth Markle and guest producer by Kalalea
26/04/2017 • 4 minutes 45 seconds
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.
"The Legacy" (7:20)
"Angels and Demons" (11:20)
03/04/2017 • 53 minutes 41 seconds
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.
05/03/2017 • 1 hour 23 minutes
HHAP Episode 7: Gigi Lamayne on Feminism & Politics in South Africa
Gigi Lamayne is part of a recent growth of female MCs in South Africa. Based in Johannesburg, her strong vocal presence and lyrical style are unmistakably hip hop. She also presents a strong, confident feminist energy in hip hop's hypermasucline culture. A member of South Africa's "born free" generation, Gigi Lamayne started MCing as a teenager. There has been a noticeable growth in her lyrics over the years, and Gigi Lamayne is now one of the most well known female MCs in South Africa.
Confrontations of sexism, patriarchy, domestic violence, and post-apartheid politics are themes throughout her music. In this conversation Gigi Lamayne talks about her music and influences, and her decision to address controversial, sensitive topics.
Her most recent release, Ground Zero, can be found on iTunes and other online outlets.
Table of Contents
Intro to themes in her music, including clips from some of her songs: 1:03
Miss Nthabi & collaborations wit
06/02/2017 • 44 minutes 52 seconds
HHAP Episode 6: Kwanza Unit, Hip Hop, and Pan Africanism in Tanzania
This episode features a conversation with two hip hop pioneers from Tanzania, KBC & Zavara (aka Rhymson) from the group Kwanza Unit. The conversation discusses the early days of hip hop in Tanzania, the influence of Mwalimu Julius Nyerere (Tanzania's 1st President) on the social consciousness in Tanzanian hip hop, language and Kwanza Unit’s decision to begin performing in Swahili, the current state of hip hop in Tanzania, the relationship between artists and the national arts council and their policies around copyright and royalties.
Parts of the conversation are in Swahili. Non-Swahili speakers will be able to follow the conversation and attempts are made to summarize the Swahili portions into English.
Table of Contents
Podcast intro - :40
“Put Ya head Up” – 11:21
“Msafiri” – 14:40
Interview – 18:26
“Run Tings” – 1:37:35
“Check Navyo Flow” – 1:41:32
“So Why” – 1:45:35
Perullo, Alex. (2005). Hooligans and heroes: Youth identity and hip hop in Dar es Salaam, Tan
29/12/2016 • 1 hour 49 minutes 19 seconds
HHAP Episode 5: Black Activism in the US & South Africa
This is a special episode of the Hip Hop African Podcast. This episode is an airing of an event we sponsored: #BlackLivesMatter and #FeesMustFall: A Panel Discussion on Black Activism in the US and South Africa held on the 29th of November at Howard University in Washington, DC.
The event brought together activists for a discussion on two pivotal movements for Black lives in the U.S. and South Africa: Black Lives Matter in the U.S. and #FeesMustFall/#RhodesMustFall in South Africa. Both movements are changing dialogues around race, gender, class, violence, and oppression.
The panelists were:
Dr. Melina Abdullah, a professor of Pan African Studies at California State University Los Angeles and national organizer with #BlackLivesMatter.
Kealeboga Mase Ramaru, an organizer with #RhodesMustFall at the University of Cape Town and the Deputy Head for the Western Cape office at Equal Education.
Nana Afua Y. Brantuo, a 2016 fellow with the Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI) and a
17/12/2016 • 2 hours 37 minutes 13 seconds
HHAP Episode 4: Hustlajay Mau Mau and Conscious Hip Hop in East Africa
This episode features a conversation with Kenyan hip hop artist Hustlajay Mau Mau. A conscious hip hop artists from Mombasa, Kenya who is part of an informal collective of conscious hip hop artists in East Africa. These artists, based in Nairobi and Mombasa, Kenya; in Kampala, Uganda; and in Dar es Salaam and Arusha, Tanzania continue to build on more than a decade of East African collaborations, forming grassroots organizing collectives and working on hip hop based initiatives that work with youth in those areas.
Hustlajay Mau Mau's info
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Hustlajay
30/11/2016 • 38 minutes
HHAP Episode 3: Xuman and Keyti on Hip Hop Culture in Senegal
This episode features an interview with Senegalese hip hop pioneers and activists Xuman and Keyti. Xuman and Keyti have been active in hip hop in Senegal for over 20 years. They now host a hip hop news show called Journal Rappé on YouTube. The episode featured on this podcast features the U.S. rapper M1.
Journal Rappé: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCImRGQL_sK7OHi1h823Nc0w
02/11/2016 • 40 minutes 59 seconds
HHAP Episode 2: Scholarship on African Hip Hop
This episode focuses on some background information on studies of hip hop and studies of hip hop in Africa. We discuss some of the scholarship that has been produced on hip hop.
The show starts with the song "Inspiration" by Tanzanian hip hop artists Sima da Black Philosopher and Mukimala from the Dar es Salaam based hip hop group Wanaitwa Uhuru (Call them Freedom). The group's album was featured in the best of 2013 on the World Hip Hop Market best of list.
You can find Mukimala on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/Mukimala-Muki-337773023036571/
15/10/2016 • 18 minutes 32 seconds
We are introducing a new podcast show titled The Hip Hop African podcast. The podcast will feature interviews with artists and conversations around certain social and political issues that hip hop in Africa addresses. The podcast will be produced by Msia Kibona Clark in the Department of African Studies at Howard University, as well as students in her Hip Hop and Popular Culture in Africa course. This episode is just a brief introduction to the podcast.
05/10/2016 • 3 minutes 2 seconds
Student Project: South African Visual Feminism
A project unpacking the feminist images available in South African Female Rap Artists' music videos.