Tag Archives: afro

First Episode, New Webisode – Tales With Tosinger

Greetings everyone,

It’s been a minute and here is what I’ve been working on. I sing, I write, I act and I tell stories. I am a modern day griot and a cultural ambassador and my name is Tosinger.¬†ūüôā

Here’s introducing, ¬†the first vlog/webisode/series, whatever you choose to call it, edition of my weekly (on Tuesdays) ¬†folk storytelling project- TALES WITH TOSINGER,

Folk tales and fables are an educational and entertaining means of passing down¬†traditions and customs from one generation to the next. An African tradition for several generations, ¬†adults would tell tales by the¬†moonlight while teaching morals and lessons. I have chosen to gather adults and children alike around a social app, a youtube video, the¬†millennial¬†way to get the world’s attention ūüėČ

The inspiration….

Enjoy¬†Episode #001 Dawu the Lion King. ¬†DO SUBSCRIBE, like, comment and spread the word. Ese!¬†¬†( pronounced “E-shay ” — which means ‘Thank you’ in Yoruba)

‚úŅ

Beautifully Dreaming, Positively Doing,

Tosinger

Afrodreamfest NYC May 22 and May 23

Ongoing for three years now, AfroDreamFest is an annual touring concert that celebrates and promotes neo afro-fusion artists/genres of music from the African continent in the diaspora to commemorate African Liberation Day. (May 25) . Previous ones were held in Atlanta and Houston and it is coming to NYC this year. For more about Afrodreamfest see Рwww.afrodreamfest.com

As the convener, I wanted to see a platform for afro-indie artists in the diaspora who make meaningful good music to come together and share a stage, ¬†it has been a journey and an ongoing one as the event continues to brand itself in the afro~diaspora traveling across select cities across America. As years go by, the hope is to have interested sponsors push it to a wider reach on a bigger stage with larger audiences who appreciate the afro fusion music these talented artists are putting out. Performing in New York on¬†May 22 at world music venues Meridian 23 on Friday May 22 and on Saturday May 23 at Silvana respectively ¬†are Brooklyn based ¬†Afrobeat band ‘Laolu and The Afromysterics’, myself,¬†Afrosoul/folk/acoustic music ‘Tosinger’, AfroRnB artist ‘Ogasilachi‘ , Afro Jazz Artist ‘Eli Fola’ and from Nigeria, Ayanbinrin- Africa’s foremost female Talking Drummer and a guest artist from Nigeria, afrosoul artist Aduke.¬†Tickets are available online at $10 and will be $15 at the door. Doors open at 7.30pm and show starts 8pm till 11ish on both days. See you there if you are in New York, great way to spend the memorial day weekend holiday and enjoy/support good music. ~https://afrodreamfestnyc2015.eventbrite.com¬†~

 

Here’s a glimpse of what you will experience live.

Ayanbinrin

Eli Fola

Tosinger

Laolu

Ogasilachi

Aduke

To stay updated on Afrodreamfest,

like on Facebookat https://www.facebook.com/AfroDreamFest , follow on Twitter@afrodreamfest and check out videos at www.youtube.com/afrodreamfest.
Website:www.afrodreamfest.com

Beautifully Dreaming…Positively Doing..

Tosinger

 

 

Merci Beaucoup – Preview from #OrganicallySinging

Presenting a short acoustic spontaneous version of ‘Merci Beaucoup’ (Thank you very much) – work in progress song from my upcoming debut album project ORGANICALLY SINGING Summer 2015. ¬†I invite you to join me on board this uniquely refreshing organic and healthy afro~soulful music journey at http://igg.me/at/organicallysinging . ¬†I appreciate your contribution to the indiegogo campaign¬†(currently 9% at 28 days left …Help!!! :D) where you can ¬†also lock in your pre-public/pre-order and get perks as well. A special thank you to all who have supported so far.

Laolu Senbanjo on Acoustic Guitar, Kunle Ade on Percussions and Eli Fola on the Saxophone. Recorded at Complete Studios, New York Oct 2014

 

Beautifully Dreaming.. Positively Doing…

xoxo

Tosinger

Carrying on the legacy of Afro Music – #Felabration with @Afromysterics NYC

In honor of Fela Kuti, his music legacy and in commemoration of his birthday, Felabration! an annual celebration is taking place in various cities all around the world during the month of October. (October 15, 2014 would be Fela Kuti’s 76th birthday). 

“The idea and concept of Felabration as an annual celebration of Fela‚Äôs music, life and times, originated from his eldest child Yeni who conceived it in 1998”.¬†…Read more here

The impact of Fela’s Afrobeat music cannot be overemphasized and his musical legacy surely lives on, greatly influencing the works of the today’s crop of Afro artists.

And so I am honored to be a part of Harlem-New York’s Felabration concert as a ¬†special guest of Laolu and The Afromysterics , also featuring the Super Yamba Band, where I’ll be doing some favs and a couple of originals. See you there if you are in NYC!

Click on images for more info:

and

See

I am also featuring at OritseFemi’s concert in NY organized by Vibesland Entertainment. ¬†I have always been drawn to his music, his afro indigenous and passionate sound and style (Mercies of the Lord and Better are some of my favs)¬†and I am glad to open for him. He recently did a spin on Fela’s Double Wahala which is currently a¬†great hit in the Nigerian music industry.

Knitting Factory has a special offer going on that you might want to check out if you are an ardent Afrobeat lover

Culled from Knitting Factory FB page

“Happy Birthday Fela Kuti!!! The Original Black President!

Felabrations are taking place around the world in celebration of his life and legacy.
Knitting Factory Records is offering 15% off the entire Fela Kuti catalog (excluding box sets) for the month of October.
Use code: HAPPYBDAYFELA at checkout)”

¬†Beautifully Dreaming… Positively Doing and keeping the flag of Afro music flying….

Tosinger

‘Finding Fela’ – A Film Documentary By Alex Gibney

Kino¬†Lorber, New York film distribution company has released the first trailer¬†to the documentary “Finding Fela,” which made its¬†world premiere at this year‚Äôs Sundance Film Festival.

‘Finding Fela’ – a look at the life and music of Fela is certainly not the first documentary to be made about the legendary AfroBeat maestro, musician, composer and performer Fela Anikulapo Kuti aka Fela Kuti. Directed by Oscar-winner Alex Gibney, the film was produced by Jigsaw Productions, Knitting Factory Entertainment, Okayplayer and Okayafrica.

Synopsis

Alex Gibney’s Finding Fela (2014) is a sweeping portrait of the artist as guerilla warrior. Set to the insistent groove of Nigerian superstar Fela Kuti’s revolutionary Afrobeat sound, the remarkable story of one man’s courageous stand against a corrupt and dictatorial government gives testament to the transformative power of music as a force of social and political unification.

Finding Fela! (2014)
Finding Fela tells the story of Fela Kuti‚Äôs life (1938 ‚Äď 1997), his music, and his social and political importance. This in-depth look at the man who created Afrobeat (a fusion of Jazz, traditional West African rhythms, Funk, Highlife, and psychedelic rock) brings audiences close to Mr. Kuti’s fight against the dictatorial Nigerian government of the 1970s and 1980s. With his audacious music and a great deal of courage, Kuti helped bring a change towards democracy in Nigeria, promoted Pan Africanist politics to the entire world and became an inspiration in the global fight for the rights of all oppressed people. As a committed critic of the legacies of European cultural imperialism, Mr. Kuti became a major political force in Nigerian and African politics ‚Äď even becoming a Presidential candidate (twice) in the 1980s. His socialist political views and truly subversive life style also lead to a criminal, government-sanctioned attack on his commune in 1977, which lead to his arrest and the death of his 82-year-old mother. Mr. Kuti was eventually released, but his mother’s death shaped the rest of his life. Culled IndieWire

View Trailer

“Finding Fela”¬†will begin its US theatrical run on¬†August 1, with an exclusive Manhattan engagement at IFC Center; it’s also scheduled to open in DC on¬†August 8¬†(at Landmark‚Äôs E Street Cinema), as well as in Boston (at Landmark‚Äôs Kendall Square) and Atlanta (Landmark‚Äôs Midtown) on¬†August 15.

Finding Fela! (2014)

Click here for full cast details…….. More info at http://www.FindingFela.com

Beautifully Dreaming…Positively Doing

Love, Peace and Beautiful Afro Music,

Tosinger

Man No Die… Music No Die ~ Gone But Not Forgotten

When it comes to music¬†and general aura of the cultural creative, I am an old soul as evident in a¬†huge section of my music taste. So it was with sparked interest and melancholy that I heard of the news of the death of Nigerian highlife, afrogroove, afrofunk¬† musical legend ‘Bola Johnson’ who ironically, his discography included a title tagged¬†‘Man no die’¬†. I got the news of his demise, as posted on the wall of a fellow afro old-school music connoisseur who is a music historian, DJ & owner of ‘Comb & Razor’, Uchenna Ikonne. The news was broken to him this morning, however Mr Bola Johnson passed on recently,¬†April 6, 2014 to be precise. No further info on the¬†circumstances of his death. May his soul rest in peace. His music legacy lives on.

From the vaults of Philips in Nigeria comes this collection of mysterious trumpeter and bandleader Bola Johnson. Unmissable 60s and early 70s recordings for all highlife and Afrobeat fans. A missing jewel from a golden age of Nigerian music РVampisoul  Records

 Bola Johnson & His Easy Life Top Beat

About Bola Johnson – as culled from a VampiSoul Publication which now links to Munster Records.

Up till now, Bola Johnson only seems to figure in the margins of the high octane Lagos music scene of the late 60s and early 70s. He may have never had the focus, the career longevity or the catalogue of titans like Afrobeat’s Fela Kuti, juju’s King Sunny Ade or highlife’s Victor Olaiya, but his music took its own magnificent route through the popular music of the time. His joyful treasure of a voice embellished every style in his repertoire, from the sweetly melodic heights of highlife and palm wine to the soulful skanking of Afro-blues/funk and Afrobeat; his red hot trumpet scorches its way to your yearning soul; his tunes vibrate with infectious hooks and undulating rhythms; he seems equally at home composing across the stylistic range‚Ķ Funk? Calypso? Highlife? You got it!

Bola Johnson was born in 1947 into a musical family. He attended Livingstone Academy in Lagos and, after that, the prestigious Eko Boys High School. In 1962 he dropped out of school to follow his musical destiny. His trumpet dreams were inflamed by his time playing with Nigerian trumpet-playing legend and highlife maestro Eddy Okonta, but he joined Eric Akeaze’s highlife band as a singer and maracas player in that same year, then resident at the Easy Life Hotel, in Mokola, Ibadan, which was the hub of the music scene in Nigeria in the 60s. When Eric Akeaze and his band left the Easy Life Hotel, Bola was asked to stay and set up the Easy Life Top Beats. They also toured the northern part of Nigeria. When Bola returned south, this time to Lagos later in 1968, he and his musicians were match fit and ready to make their funkiest tracks.

In 1964, while still only 17 years old, Bola had been signed to the Philips West African record label, and he recorded many of the rootsier tracks you can hear on this album as 7-inch singles. In 1968, in Lagos, he recorded the funkier material on his “Papa Rebecca Special” LP and later a rootsier album entitled “Ashewo Ajegunle Yakare”. Given how great he sounds, you’ve just got to ask exactly why more material wasn’t recorded. According to Bola, the A&R people at Philips in those days allowed sentiment for the past to override their judgment in promoting new artists, because they had highlife giants on their label such as Osita Osadebe, Rex Lawson, Victor Olaiya and Bobby Benson, and so it was hard for younger artists to get their attention, backing and consequent exposure.

Additionally, it was always difficult for him to own musical instruments, and bandleaders were the people who owned and supplied their musicians with musical hardware. Of course, you must factor in the civil war and the consequent decrease in popularity of highlife. Then the rise of juju, Afrobeat and the briefly fashionable Afro-rock. Classic and unique as Bola’s approach was, it didn’t seem to light the same kind of fuse for young Lagos. As his musical opportunities began to go off the boil, Bola went into broadcasting, firstly at Radio Nigeria Ibadan in 1970 and then he moved to the FRCN (Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria) in 1973. Sometimes he played at the Cool Cat in Ebute Metta, Lagos.

Bola Johnson  1947 -2014

Listen to¬†his “Lagos sisi” track

Boomkat product review of ‘Man No Die’ CD

The irrepressible Vampisoul label presents a wonderful overview of Nigerian legend, Bola Johnson. With all the attention afforded to Fela Kuti, Victor Olaiya and King Sunny Ade, Bola seems to have slipped by all but the most ardent collectors and Nigerian natives, that is until Kayode Samuel painstakingly researched and dug deep in the crates to collect these twenty two track, spread over two discs. As you’ll discover when dipping in, Bola was a charming personality who could adapt his charming vocals and trumpet playing to a range of styles, from Calypso to Funk, Highlife and Afrobeat. Disc 1 contains the Afrobeat spiced palm wine styles of ‘Asewo Ajegunle Yakare’, the frisky merengue-like rhythms of his house band Easy Life Top Beats on ‘Oro Aiye’, and the swinging highlife of ‘Iyawo Kokoro Mi Da’ with its charming soap opera intro. Disc 2 opens with the killer drums of ‘Mimo Mimo Loluwo’ (sample hunters beware), before firing up the deadly James Brown-debted Yoruba Funk of ‘Ezuku Bozo’ and ‘Lagos Sisi’, plus the infectious blues licks and conga shake of ‘Lagos Special’, and heartwarming rootsy Highlife in ‘Edumare Soro’. Once word gets out about this album, there’s gonna be a stampede from the Afrobeat lovers!

Bola Johnson - Man No Die image

Whatever happens to music royalties of legendary Afro musicians? What is the structure in place for African musicians to get what they rightfully and legally deserve when they are long retired or gone? or after foreign music tastemakers see the treasure in their work and take over representation/distribution, do they get what they rightfully deserve? This will be a great “look into” for future and I’ll be checking with my friend, Uchenna Ikonne, on his thoughts on that soon.

Talking about mysterious legends, this video documentary about William Onyeabor,the man and his music, intrigued me so much,¬† to say the least. It is interesting how the relevance of ‘old music’ is now catching and riding on the waves of the ‘modern age’. Watch this.

Keeping the legacy of afro music alive, and promoting and supporting talented indie afro~artists today, who make contemporary afrofusion music on the continent and in the diaspora, is a passion/project of mine tagged ‘Afrodreamfest’. Check on it and be in the know and kindly spread the word. Thank you!

Beautifully Dreaming, Positively doing..

xoxo

Tosinger

CAPTAIN ‘KEZIAH JONES’ THE RUGGED – Audio & Visuals

Hiya,

Have you heard of the¬† Guitar Wiz Musician Keziah Jones? What?! You haven’t?¬† Well, now you do, no dozing on a musical bicycle ūüôā The continents are loving his “Afro BluFunk” music, Europe in particular. An eccentric Afro ~ Bohemian, he is very relevant to the new wave of the Afro musical scene even though he has been around for a while. I personally love his branding, the uniqueness and incorporation of Afro elements ( especially on his latest project which depicts him as having superpowers dressed in a simple yet dramatic costume made out of African Ankara fabric) Here are a few picks from his photoshoot,¬† so distinctly intriguing, a representation of a musical African SuperHero.. His new album ‘Captain Rugged’ is available on iTunes.

Biography

A Nigerian-born rocker heavily influenced by Jimi Hendrix and Fela Kuti, Keziah Jones gained popularity in England and France with singles like “Rhythm Is Love” and “Beautiful Emile.” Jones was sent to a boarding school in London when he was eight, and he started busking in the London Underground when he was in his teens. He gigged up a storm in Covent Garden and Portobello Road, which led to his discovery by manager Phil Pickett. One bassist (Phil “Soul” Sewell), one drummer (Richie Stevens), and many gigs later, Jones found himself with his first album, Blufunk Is a Fact!, in 1992. Several more albums ensued over the next 15 years (African Space Craft, Liquid Sunshine, and Black Orpheus among them), fixing Jones as one of the more prominent blues-rock musicians on the European music scene in the late ’90s and early 2000s.

Less talk, more audio/visual stimulants.

Feed Your Eyes¬† – Photos by Vincent Thomas (From Keziah Jones’ FB)

Feed Your Ears

Afronewave

The first song of his I ever heard ‘Kpafuka’. Album Version here

And this¬† one about my hometown : Abeokuta – Egba anthem ‘Oke ati Petele’

For more about Keziah, check out his Wiki or his site here

Beautifully Dreaming, Positively Doing…

xoxo

Tosinger

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT : TOSIN

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.  ~Berthold Auerbach

Hello Peeps,

Hope everyone is doing alright. There’s always music to make you feel a little better. Right? ¬†The spotlight is on a very good, personal, musical friend of mine, coincidentally a namesake, TOSIN (Tosin is a Nigerian (Yoruba) unisex name, short form of Oluwatosin which means ‘God is enough to be¬†worshiped¬†or God is worthy to be¬†worshiped). Tosin is a¬†songwriter, vocalist, drummer extraordinaire, composer and arranger.¬†He is one of ‘us’ carrying the torch of African music in the US diaspora. He is ¬†a renowned drummer & percussionist (oh I said that already :))¬†former – Ayetoro band member who has played with who’s who in the industry including¬†Spyro Gyra, Femi Kuti, Andres Levin, Jon Carroll, Antibalas, Julie Dexter among others. More on his site. I absolutely love his sound and vibe, afro feel with a touch of contemporary lacings, and his use of the Yoruba language, just like my music. Keep scrolling. ūüôā

Tosinger (Left) Tosin (Right) at AfroDreamfest

I will let this video of his interview with Heather Maxwell do the talking. Enjoy.

Music Time in Africa presents TOSIN with Host Heather Maxwell

Click on Tosin’s image below to learn more about his music, connect with him and get his latest project ‘Life Begins’

Beautifully Dreaming, Positively Doing..

xoxo

Tosinger

NAIJABOYZ ARE BAAAAAAAAACK!!

Top of the day to you all,

So this musical comedic duo, ‘The Komolafe Twins’ aka Naijaboyz have been in hiatus for a while. I’ve always been amused by their African take on mainstream pop music through their intentionally satirical videos and spoofy remixes. So they just launched their comeback with an ‘African Parents’ spin on disciplining their wayward teenagers, influenced by ¬†‘Miley Cyrus’ ¬†using her “Wrecking Ball” music video. You need to be conversant with all the drama surrounding Miley Cyrus and the ‘Wrecking Ball’ video and maybe a little more familiar with the ‘legality’ and regularity of corporal punishment back in Nigeria ( and maybe Africa in general) especially pre-MTV generation to enjoy the video. Funny enough I was just having that conversation yesterday about how we got spanked in secondary school albeit as innocent students alongside the perpetrator if no one owned up to the accusation ha ha.:D.

Nevertheless, this is just plain and simple – hilarious.

NaijaBoyz

So here goes NaijaBoyz¬†Music video Miley Cyrus performing ‘Wrecking Ball’ The African Remix.. Miley Cyrus – Wrecking Ball (Chatroulette Version) By the way, “Chop Igbati” means “Give you a dirty and resounding slap” (not a literal translation lol but that’s the idea, “chop”- pidgin for “take it”, igbati – “slap” in Yoruba)

Young generation ‘Africans in America’, or in the ‘West’ in general, you have to relate.. ūüėÄ

For more of NaijaBoyz, check out their YouTube Channel

Beautifully Dreaming, Positively Doing…

xoxo

Tosinger

You Tie your BowTie, I Tie my HeadTie

Happy Sunday Friends,

‘Tis a beautiful day to be Afro~bohochic and that is exactly what I did.

Scarf collage 2

So I like doing things out of the box, going against the norm type o’ person I am. Creative peeps are like that right? so there goes a sigh of relief. ūüôā

So here’s a fashion accessory that will be live on the Afrodreaming store soon. ¬†Georgietta’s SkirtyHeadwrap¬© (I’ll tell you the story behind that tag soon) ¬†The fabric pattern is so beautiful and the texture very malleable …it’s not your regular accessory, I’ll tell you why soon. ¬†Unique Colors, and patterns, …you’ll have it. .for all the ladies out there who admire and want the look…..Watch out 2014! “Georgietta’s Afro-Boho Line” ¬† on the Afrodreaming Store Site.

(This is a teaser)

IMG_20131124_093008

What’s more, you can lift that lovely wavy ¬†handle and complete the wrap around ¬†to get the look below

Scarf collage

Scarf side profile

Well till then have a laughter filled week. …And to my American friends….Have a Happy thanksgiving!! There’s a lot to be thankful for!

20131124_093045 IMG_20131124_092949

Beautifully Dreaming, Positively Doing..

xoxo

Tosinger