COVID and Mental Health
The excellent California-focused site “Capital & Main” has a fascinating article by Mark Kreidler, published Feb. 9, 2023, on The Untold Story of COVID’s Impact on California’s Mental Health. It has been reposted in the always informative website of the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism.
South Africa – Blaq Diamond with Ommy Dimpoz
An enjoyable video from South Africa’s Blaq Diamond and Tanzania’s Omary Dimpoz. Like so many videos coming out from all over Africa, it highlights both the professionalism of the artists, but also gives us wonderful glimpses of actual life.
Ethiopia – Qwanqwa ቋንቋ – Kemekem
Qwanqwa is a wonderful ensemble bringing together many elements of Ethiopian classical jazz, with a distinctive modern flair. They are known for their efforts to weave music from the various cultural threads of Ethiopia and Eritrea. But above all, they play great music, and are a joy to watch.
Zimbabwe – Berita
Berita is known throughout the south of East Africa and is notable for her extensive musical collaborations and involvement with artist participation and ownership of music production. Seen elsewhere on this site for a collaboration with Zambia’s Yo Maps, here she is in Ndikhawulele.
Zambia – Yo Maps featuring Berita
Here is a haunting video addressing the pain of missing home and loved ones, showing Zambia and South Africa. Yo Maps collaborates here with Berita, a Zimbabwean star.
Nigeria – Aṣa (Ocean)
Nigeria’s wealth of artistic talent, diverse cultures (religious, ethnic, linguistic) can baffle the outsider! But the musical scene is very sophisticated, and provides an infinite variety of pleasure. Aṣa is one of Nigeria’s most established stars, and far too little known in the states. This stunning video has captured us. It was filmed not far…
Senegal – Rema Diop
As with any country, Senegal’s artistic contributions and variety defy description. Senegal in particular punches above its weight! Instead of one of Senegal’s better known musical exports, I’ve chosen a beautiful video From Rema Diop, big in the Senegalese charts:
Guinea – Mory Kante
Mory Kante died recently in 2020, but his reputation is as strong as ever. Notable of course as one of Guinea’s greatest stars, his dedication to public health (including as a Medicin Sans Frontières ambassador) is a great example of what is possible for the next generations of artists.
Uganda – Juliana Kanyomozi
While we collectively await better news from Uganda’s Human Rights situation, we’d like to highlight one of our recent favorites, new music from one of East Africa’s shining lights, Juliana Kanyomozi. Certainly a star, but avowedly unpolitical, unlike Bobi Wine. Meanwhile, the disturbing and disgraceful closure of the UN Human Rights Office in Uganda has…
Congo – Papa Wemba
Here is some classic music from the Congo: The great, but greatly problematic, Papa Wemba. While indisputably a great musician and performer, his instrumental role in leading a human smuggling ring, leading to his imprisonment, leaves his legacy irredeemably tarnished.