Preview: Global Afrobeat e-Fest (Saturday 23rd May 2020)

afrobeat efest

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, afrobeat’s rise in global popularity in the past decade has unavoidable. But the genre, with a rich history based on instrumental figures such as Fela Kuti, Tony Allen and Oghene Kologbo dating back to the late 60s, is more than a commercial fad.

To commemorate this Rhythm Passport is co-hosting the online Global Afrobeat e-Fest on Saturday 23rd May with Belgian DJ, radio presenter and music curator Mukambo. This mini festival will include live music, DJs and discussions streamed via Facebook, all in the name of afrobeat.

There will be a live session with the band Carapaus Afrobeat featuring guitarist Kologbo. Carapaus Afrobeat is an ensemble of nine Brazilian and Portuguese bandmates who released their first album Night Fever last year, integrating afrobeat with Black American staples such as funk, blues and soul to great acclaim.

There will also be vibrant DJ sets with Mukambo himself as well as Ghanian Chief Commander Yaaba of the Brixton-formed band Yaaba Funk and Rwandan DJ Eric Soul of Rwanda of the creative network AFROGROOV.

For the live talks, Kologbo will host Ode to Baba Tony, in memory of former bandmate Tony Allen who passed away earlier this month, with Bukky Leo and Dele Sosimi. Juanita Euka (London Afrobeat Collective) will host a Women in Afrobeat discussion alongside Thaïs Diarra (Professor Wouassa), Monica Avila (Abayomy), Macarena Rozic (Newen Afrobeat).

And of course, we’ll also be discussing the global afrobeat movement with acts from across the world – Duke Amayo (Antibalas, New York), Klibens Michelet (London Afrobeat Collective), Pedro Rajão (journalist/filmmaker, Rio de Janeiro), Martin Smith (Kologbo & his OK Band, Roforofo Jazz, Paris) & Firmann aka Rumshot (Instigator Afrobeat Orchestra, Singapore).

The current list of artists isn’t exhaustive, however, so make sure to keep glued onto the Facebook event page for updates of who else will perform. We hope to see you there – 16:00-22:00 (London time)!

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