Interview with Musician Ntjam Rosie


I'm very pleased to bring you this interview with musician Ntjam Rosie, whose beautiful music (and fabulous style) has graced the blog before. Ntjam has an impressive 4 albums under her belt: Atouba, the fantastic Elle, Live at Grounds and her latest release from this year – At the Back of Beyond.

Ntjam talks about the importance of being grounded, of taking the time to hone your craft and of persistence. I can't agree with her more that nothing (worth having) comes easy!

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TGIF! The best of 2011: great music discoveries


Staff Benda Bilili. I highly recommend the film, Benda Bilili – a documentary about the groups rise from poverty and obscurity to international success. It's proper feel-good.

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Interpretations of Africa: Football, Art and Design


You have just a few more days to rush over to the Design Museum for Interpretations of Africa: Football Art and Design.

10 African artists from PUMA.Creative's Creative Africa Network were commissioned to design their national football team's kit. Countries represented include Algeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gabon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Namibia, Senegal, South Africa and Togo.

Read more about the exercise and the artists' inspiration over on Design Week. I was particularly amused by the apparent fact that initial designs were toned down due to FIFA regulations that "decorative elements are not allowed to dominate playing equipment."

Exhibition ends 30th November.

Images: Senegal shirt (left) and Namibia shirt, via Design Week (see more here).

TGIF! Sounds from Africa Oyé

Sounds from some of the artists who performed at last weekend's Africa Oyé festival. Enjoy.

And if you're in London this evening, don't forget to check out the Afropolitans Friday Late at the V&A museum. It's going to be a great night! See you there …


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TGIF! End-of-year special

The year summed up in African music! Songs that will remind me of 2010.


The year of the first FIFA World Cup held on African soil. Shakira's "Waka Waka" may forever be associated with the historic event but those who know know that, this right here is the original …


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Week in review



Doodle for Google Kenya



Having a parent from Tanzania and a parent from Kenya, I had two reasons to celebrate this week with both countries commemorating independence. The celebrations on the blog were visual – with photos taken by myself, in various parts of Tanzania and, beautiful visions of Nairobi from Mutua Matheka.

I would love to hear how all of you in, and from, Tanzania and Kenya marked your Uhuru and Jamhuri Days. I hope that they were opportunities for remembering, gratefulness, unity, solidarity and significantly, optimism. Mama Lucy, an inspiring change-maker in Tanzania, asks a poignant question: "What have we done within those years [since independence] for change?" 

It's so easy for us, as individuals, to reiterate this question and look towards our leaders for answers (that will probably not be very forthcoming!). But the question I would like to ask is: what are we each doing for ourselves, our communities and our countries? Individuals like Mama Lucy are proof that we each have the power to effect positive change in our communities. Let's start by imagining it …

Here is a round-up of all of last week's posts, in case you missed anything:

A huge thanks to you for taking the time to read and share comments, facebook appreciation and tweet love. Remember, you can also get updates via facebooktwitter and by subscribing to the Afri-love feed.

Feedback is incredibly useful to me so, please drop me a line with any comments, suggestions, ideas etc.

Next week, look out for:

  • Quote of the week
  • Inspiration from Senegalese artistic techniques
  • Afri-love on Etsy
  • Inspiration from South Africa with a Greek twist
  • More album art (There's so much inspiration to draw from that I'm making this a monthly installment)
  • TGIF! Mali meets Cuba
  • and more!

Have a fantastic week! Be proud, be inspired and be thankful.



Images, starting 2nd from top: Illustration by Lulu Kitololo, from "5 Steps to Creative Independence"; Serge Mouange's Wafrica project; Chief Nyamweya doodling for Google Kenya; Zanzibar, Tanzania – photos by Lulu Kitololo; Nairobi, Kenya – photo by Mutua Matheka 



Inspired by Wafrica


Imagined by Cameroonian-born, globe-trotting Interior Designer/Industrial Designer/Artist, Serge Mouange, Wafrica is a creative response to globalization. Beginning with two "ancient, strong and sophisticated identities," Japan and Africa, Wafrica seeks to show the positive opportunities presented by their interaction. Rather than homogenization and the forgetting or abandoning of identities, Mouange believes that the juxtaposition of different identities can form "a new and enlightened international consciousness."

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Interview with musician Muntu Valdo



**Muntu Valdo will be performing on Friday 30th October, 2015, at the final of the Afri-love Sundown Sessions in London. Limited space available so book your tickets now.**


Muntu valdo 1

Celebrating Cameroon's Unification Day (marking independence from the UK) and continuing the Afri-love interview series that began this week, today – featuring Cameroonian musician, Muntu Valdo. Writing his own music since the age of 15, Muntu has developed a unique style he calls the Sawa Blues. Here's a little about the man behind the enchanting, sincere, soulful music … 

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