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Music

Music. Mina, ‘the veiled rapper’.

Everything was against her. Aminata Gaye – Mina ‘the veiled one’ is her stage name – was raised in a traditional Senegalese family, when she realised that music made her a self-confident person, she knew there was no way back. She started to fight for her dreams and for a better society. “I cannot be…

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Music. Fatima Said. Enchanting Voice.

Capable, beautiful and full of positive energy, the Egyptian soprano Fatma Said with her formidable voice has won her place on the most prestigious lyrical venues. Her success is also due to the efforts of her family who supported her every time the burden of prejudices and common places seemed to suggest she place her…

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Music. Jonas Gwangwa. Antiapartheid jazz leader.

The South African musician and composer was active both in music and in politics. At the cost of exile. Together with Hugh Masekela, a reference point for jazz enthusiasts. He died on 23 January, the same day on which, in 2018, Hugh Masekela passed away. The South African trombonist Jonas Gwangwa was just eighteen months…

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Music. Santrofi, the sound of pan-Africanism.

The Ghanaian band Santrofi demonstrates that Highlife music is still a rich and vital force. Artistically speaking, Highlife is the music of modern Ghana; a mix of pop and jazz not without ethnic influences imported from Nigeria in the first decades of the nineteen hundreds and exported to the world after the end of the…

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Music. Djibouti, Modern Notes.

The New York music house Ostinato Records recently released a Groupe RTD album – a Djibouti band composed of civil servants – the first to take modern music beyond the borders of the country in the Horn of Africa.  The international diffusion of modern music in the Horn of Africa came late on the scene…

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Music. The Sarkodie Generation.

The head of a musical movement that is both cultural and profitable, Michael Kwesi Owusu Addo, known professionally as Sarkodie, achieved this position due to the stylistic ductility and the quality of his texts in the Twi language. With the international emergence of modern African music, in the eighties, a number of stars of that…

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Music: Hope Masike, ‘The Princess of the Mbira’.

Evocative music, blending ancestral melodies and pop rhythms. “I hear our ancestors encouraging us to find our Promised Land and challenge injustice.” The Shona People of Zimbabwe love the mbira, a Sub-Saharan musical instrument. The mbira is a small wooden tablet (often about the width of two hands beside each other) on top of which…

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Music. Obongjayar. Aromas and Rhythms of Mother Africa.

His name is Steven Umoh but in the world of music, he is known by all as Obongjayar. One of the rising stars of new African music, he is one of the best-known personalities on the contemporary Nigerian scene. His style ranges from funk to electronic, mixing melodies, rap and talking, modernist soul and Afrobeat.…

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Music. Mory Kanté. The Electric Griot.

His eighties hit Yeke Yeke made him one of the prime artists of nascent world music. The singer and musician Mory Kanté has died aged seventy after a long illness. Originally from Guinea, he was known all over the world especially for his hit, Yeke Yeke, launched in 1987. That piece of music, containing ethnic…

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Music. Manu Dibango. The Poet with the Saxophone.

A victim of the Coronavirus, in Paris, on 24 March 2020. The Cameroonian saxophonist and composer, best known for his soul/funk single, ‘Soul Makossa’, Manu Dibango left his mark on a long period of Afro Music. On his arrival in Marseilles in 1949 as a sixteen-year-old, the new music of the African continent was still…

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Gaye Su Akyol. Dreamer of the Turkish Sound.

A mixture of Anatolian pop and oriental folk, gypsy resonances and western sounds. A committed voice denouncing the incoherences of its land. Anatolia is a peninsula that forms part of modern Turkey. What the ancient Romans called Asia Minor has been the cradle of a number of civilisations, from that of the Hittites to those…

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Music. Omar & Gustavo.

Omar Sosa and Gustavo Ovalles. Two great musicians, two different stories often merging in a most striking artistic association. Omar Sosa, a Cuban of class 1965, is a pianist of the school of jazz. He began with the marimbas – a typical Caribbean instrument – while still a small boy, and then moved on to…

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Advocacy

Climate Change and Advocacy. Planting Bamboos.

In the Philippines, the missionaries of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD) are committing to plant 100,000 seedlings of Bamboo by 2022. With an…

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Baobab

The Spider and the Sky God's Stories.

The Chief of the Sky Gods had many stories to tell. As Spider listened to the stories of the Sky God, he said to his wife,…

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Youth & Mission

Mission. Our Life with Our People.

Three Comboni Missionaries talk about their missionary experience. My name is Gédéon Ngunza Mboma from Democratic Republic of Congo. For the last eleven years, as a…

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