Friday, March 10, 2017

Late to the Akala Party

I have always liked to be ahead of the curve, especially when it comes to music, but I have to admit to being WAY behind the curve on Akala. I saw him performing live last year for the first time (on his 10th anniversary tour!!) and he restored my faith in hip-hop as a musical genre not because of his imaginative approach to music but more because of his use of the medium to deliver important messages - like the one he delivers here, but without the backbeat.
What I like about Akala's discussion of Everyday racism and more (see links below), is the way he communicates so clearly about the power of everyday 'mundane' experience, and the everyday language that we use, but is able to relate that directly to the injustices imposed through history and by a society run on division. I can't help but wonder how discourses around 'identity', no matter how well-intentioned, only serve to support this everyday racism and stereotyping of all divisions.

Akala recently hit the mainstream with a BBC4 documentary on Jamaican music "Roots, Reggae, Rebellion" but regularly features in a lot of online video interviews, discussing a wide range of topics, and on talk shows.
Here are more links to talks (some long, some short) and to some of his music: "Lose Myself" & "Carried Away".
I got to the party late - unfashionably so - but am so glad I got the right address.

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