ART X INK IS HAPPENING ON SATURDAY 12TH AUG 17

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Accra, in recent times, is gradually becoming an art hub thanks to the numerous exciting art fairs and festivals it hosts. In a few days, the city will play host to another exciting art festival. 

Happening at the Untamed Empire this Saturday, it’s an event you wouldn’t want to miss. CLICK  FOR LOCATION

ArtXInk (Art x Ink) is a creative Arts fair for everyone! There’d be an astounding presence of creatives and you most definitely want to be a part this experience. I’d  particularly be going to the fair to get my voice on the Accra We Dey Podcasts session that would be recorded at the event. Who knows, the LOML (Love of my life)  might be listening and fall in love with my voice.

ArtXInk would be offering a number of side activities and packages just for you! Via @JoeyChase, here’s a Thread list of WHY YOU MIGHT WANT TO BE THERE!

 

Throwback: Pat Thomas – Sika Y3 Mogya

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‘Let me remind you again, (that) money is not a beast as they proclaim, money makes a man, money is blood (life)’. 

The opening words on one of the most beautiful composed, well known highlife song of all time. ‘Sika Y3 Mogya” (which translate as money is blood) happens to be, arguably the biggest song by legendary highlife crooner Pat Thomas. For those born in the 80s and early 90s, the song was a soundtrack to their lives by virtue of it being the theme song of the then popular National Lotteries sponsored TV show. An apt song choice if you ask me.

“Sika Y3 Mogya” sounds like a response to the well-known mantra of ‘money being the root of all evil’. Pat Thomas challenges this notion by underscoring the point that, money isn’t evil. Rather, it is blood; it’s a livewire to man’s existence and sustenance. And that, all must strive to be financially comfortable.

He makes this very clear by highlighting the ‘magic’ that (a) bag of money conjures: good health, good relationship, respect, and finest things in life. He further points out a very interesting fact: when misfortune strikes in a family, all decisions and suggestions are put on hold till the opinion of the wealthiest family member is heard. This sad truth holds since as the Akan saying goes ‘for all that would be said, it takes money to do it all’.

 

The song’s title doubles as the album title of his six track LP.  Recorded in 1991 at the Oketeke Studios, the qualities of the song rise beyond the central theme of being rich as expressed by the ‘Golden Voice of Africa’, Pat Thomas. It’s your quintessential highlife sound: the unmistakable warmth of the Yaa Amponsah guitar rhythms (defining instrument in highlife), the seductive mellowness, the sparsely arranged instruments and the generous ‘dance time’ on the song.

Even though Pat Thomas used ‘blood’ as a metaphor in his song, the significance of blood in Akan culture can’t be overlooked. In the Akan concept of ‘Man’, three elements constitute the make of human beings (Nipa): the Spirit (sunsum), the Okra (soul) and mogya (blood). According to the Ghanaian philosopher Kwesi Wiredu, the blood, despite science pointing to it as essential in man’s survival (through the supply of oxygen and other essential nutrients to vital organs), is nothing but a family lineage determinant. In the Akan cultural system, kids inherit maternally and by custom belong to the woman’s family since the child inherits the mother’s blood. But, Pat Thomas, a Fante (an Akan) wasn’t referring to the significance of blood in the Akan composition of humans as stated earlier. Rather, his reference seems to draw from the scientific perspective where blood matters very much if you are to scrap it off any metaphorical reference.

“Sika y3 mogya/)nsh3 wo ho a na 3yare” (money is blood/ you feel sick when you don’t have it), he expresses his observations with such open candidness. Indeed money is life. Money is important. Money is essentially why we work hard. Money guarantees comfort. In short, money matters.

This Pat Thomas release is and shall remain such a classic song not only because it’s based a poignant statement of fact and exquisite production works. “Sika Y3 Mogya” is a sampler’s four course meal.

DJ K3V and Khadi present ‘Khake Project’

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”The dance can reveal everything mysterious that is hidden in music, and it has the additional merit of being human and palpable. Dancing is poetry with arms and legs.” -Charles Baudelaire

Music and dance have gone hand in hand for ages and it is no wonder that DJ’s naturally gravitate to people who enjoy dancing.

The Khake (pronounced “cake”) Project represents the relationship between DJ’s and dancers that has existed over the centuries. DJ K3V in is undying mission to expose the Ghanaian commercial market to growing genres of music such as Afro House, EDM and Trap, connected with Khadi instantly when they worked together on a previous project.

Khadi, an energetic, artistic and vibrant dancer who expresses her artistry in various forms of dance, has managed to capture the imaginations of numerous Ghanaians who have now developed a taste for her form of art.

Together, the duo have embarked on a journey in which they plan to combine both their love of music and dance; with the aim to not only entertain viewers and listeners, but also to encourage them to try new things and not be shy to move their bodies freely to any type of music.

This first volume of The Khake Project features music from mainly the EDM sub-genre Moombahton, with a blend of Trap and Dancehall.

Subscribe to their YouTube Channel:

Khake Projects

Follow Khadi and DJ K3V on Twitter:

@Khadi_

@DJ_K3V

On InstaGram:

@khadi_

@fokn_dj

The Real Ones Are Never What You THINK: An interview with STRAFF

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”Simplicity is the hardest technique to pull off because it has to be simply beautiful in an artistic way plus it saves time and money”  – STRAFF

I’m inspired right now, probably because of Richard’s recent article or the euphoria in my eyes. Last two days have been a rush for me, it’s been a rush for the culture and I’m quite joyous and excited.

I met STRAFF earlier this week and it’s the best experience I’ve had in a while! I was so happy. I love what I do because I get to meet different people; it’s so fun being in the colorful world of Straff. I’ve watched him grow, admired his art, recently drowning in his music, with his self-directed video, he showed another edge of him that appealed to my film making senses, and lastly his ‘Thirst Merch’ coming soon (yes he’s into fashion too), he’s a ‘Thirst’ of creativity packed in one human body.

He’s completely self-confident in what he his, the ideas he creates with each project is a showcase of his mind, a bundle of himself sent to the culture to create. We’re having more minds in this generation doing what they love for the love of putting their expressions into the world. First odd thing was, Straff typed in all caps, “I JUST LOVE THE COOL APP TO TEXT IN CAPS” his response when asked why.

If that’s not enough to make you curious about other self-explained actions that built up his world I don’t know what will. The most I’ve heard from this squad man, (yes he’s always around with his mob ready to wave shit up) was an interview I read on Radr, it wasn’t enough but the visuals were incredible, a haven of his senses captured with his psychedelic use of colors. I’m lucky to dive into his mind, publishing our discussion is a pleasure.
(PS. I left all his answers in cap, yeah! I want you to feel his wave).


You’re visual aesthetic. Your music, art, production is all STRAFF. Tell me about how this aesthetic and persona was born?

Straff: THROUGH THE THIRST WHICH LEADS ME ON FOREVER AND EVER. YEAH I DO A BUNCH OF COOL STUFF. FIRSTLY THE VISUALS, IMAGES, VIDEO EDITS AND THE FAMOUS GRAPHIC DESIGNS. MAKING MUSIC OF COURSE, AND THE COOLEST OF CLOTHES. I GOT LIKE SCATTERED IDENTITIES AND REPUTATIONS BUILT AROUND THESE STUFF I DO BUT SOON COME TOGETHER AS THE BRAND BUILDS TO THE MOON AND BACK, IT’S SUPERLATIVE. THE WAY I FEEL IT SHOULDN’T BE IS THE BEST WAY I APPROACH STUFF

What draws you to approaching your art in ways not normally accepted?

Straff: CAUSE I HATE RANDOM SHIT, I LOVE TO LEAVE YOU THINKING AND GASPING TO THE LAST SECOND YOU GIVE UP ON HOW I MADE SOMETHING, ITS JUST WHO I AM. I CANT CHANGE IT. HOW & WHY*^ I MADE SOMETHING.

How did you get the name Straff and what’s the story behind your style of music?

Straff: STRAFF IS SHORT FOR STRAFFITTI, JUST A NAMED NICK BY A FRIEND I LIKED. NO STORY BRO, CAUSE THERES NO PRECISE STYLE YET. BUT I LOVE TO LISTEN TO THEOPHILUS LONDON, FRANK OCEAN, JOEY BADASS, POP STAPLES, AND LOGIC
Talking music, your last body of work was a brilliant piece of unorthodox yet perfectly curated sounds with a guest feature from MI. Tell us about vanilla sky and working with MI?

Straff: YEAH WUSS COOL. WORKING WITH M.I IS ONE OF MY MILESTONES ACHIEVED AT A REALLY EARLY STAGE, NOT TO FORGET THE FACT I WAS INTRODUCED THROUGH ICE PRINCE, LOVED THE WORK FLOW.
You’re very vocal about being different, being yourself. Do people find it hard accepting your art or music?

Straff: I FEEL BEING YOURSELF IS THE BEST FORM OF COOL. I MEAN PEOPLE THAT FUCK WITH ME AND LOVE ME, ENGAGE CAUSE I’M DOING STRAFF, I’M CREATING STUFF OF MY OWN IDENTITY & ALL.
Do you feel offended when people compare you to Tyler (The Creator)?

Straff: ME AND TYLER ARE TWO DIFFERENT PEOPLE. I DON’T SEE ANY REASON FOR COMPARISON. I MEAN, HE’S A GENIUS NOT TO DISPUTE THAT FACT AND I LOVE WHAT HE DOES, HE INSPIRES THE THIRST IN ME.
You use a lot of colors?

Straff: CALEON FOX, ASAP ROCKY, JADEN SMITH, PHARELL WILLIAMS USES A LOT OF COLOURS. WHY NOT COMPARE ME WITH THEM? CALEON FOX IS ACTUALLY THE GUY TO CREDIT FOR MY COLOURFUL, INTERESTING LIFESTYLE, LOVE THAT GUY MUCH MORE. HE INSPIRED ME AND ADDED TO MY CREATIVE JUICES.
What’s the vision of your cinematography?

Straff: TO CREATE AND CONTROL VISUAL ELEMENTS IN WHAT YOU SEE FOR A VIDEO PROJECT, ALL IS STILL IN PROGRESS TILL THE GRADUAL TEAM DEVELOPMENT IS COMPLETE.
What will such videos look like?

Straff: BRAIN SUPPLEMENTS, EYE MULTIVITAMINS.
How would you define the creative scene around you presently?

Straff: UGH, I REALLY DON’T PAY SO MUCH ATTENTION HERE. BUT FROM WHAT I SEE THERE’S DEAD VIBES OVER HERE AND NOBODY IS REALLY READY TO CREATE MIND CHANGING STUFF. PEOPLE JUST WANT TO GET AWAY WITH PLAYBACKS. BUT IT’S COOL THERE’S ALOT OF COME UPS AND THE RESPONSE IS LOW.
Response is low?

Straff: ART INTAKE IS REALLY LOW. POOR STREAM LEVELS, CURATED SHOWS MUSIC/ARTS, POOR RESPONSE FROM THE CROWD, POOR FEEDBACK.

KEEP THE POSITIVITY VERY TIGHT AROUND YOU ALWAYS, LEARN MORE. DO ALL WHAT YOU CAN DO BEFORE YOU DIE, YOU DIE ALONE SO NEVER LET ANYONE DRIFT YOU.

What influences do you think can increase the acceptance?

Straff: THERE’S A LOT LEADING TO THE PROBLEM: POOR SYSTEM, YOU CAN’T EVEN CHANGE FROM THERE, IT’S AFFECTING EVERYTHING. NO INTERNET FOR PEOPLE TO STREAM. IT’S A LOT, MOST ON THE ROLLS IS ON ONLINE AND PEOPLE CAN’T EVEN GET IN HERE. JUST THE RESPONSE TO DOPE ASS STUFF OUT THERE, VERY POOR.
In the shit storm which is Nigeria, how do keep focused on doing your art regardless?

Straff:  IT’S WHAT IS, IT’S WHAT I LOVE SO I DO MY SHIT REGARDLESS. Y’ALL DO YOUR SHIT. KEEP THE POSITIVITY VERY TIGHT AROUND YOU ALWAYS, LEARN MORE. DO ALL WHAT YOU CAN DO BEFORE YOU DIE, YOU DIE ALONE SO NEVER LET ANYONE DRIFT YOU.
What is your aesthetic as a fashion lover? And plans do you have for maybe your own brand?

Straff: I LOVE PLAIN COLOURS MIXED TO THE PERFECT PALETTE. CLEAN WARM WHITE NICE SOCKS. ALSO PERFECTLY DESIGNED SHIRTS OF PATTERNS OF AN ELEMENT ARRANGED WELL. SIMPLICITY IS ALSO KEY TO MY DESIGN, BASICALLY OLD HELLS KITCHEN (NEW YORK + ITALIAN) FASHION RECANTED WITH COLOURS TOO, REALLY COOL. NEW THIRSTY MERCH OUT NEXT MONTH.
What’s your take on African fashion from the youths’ perspective?

Straff: AFRICAN FASHION? I PAY MORE ATTENTION TO OTHER ROOTS ROUND THE WORLD. I SEE AFRICAN FASHION EVERYDAY. NOT LIKE IT SUCKS BUT ITS NOT JUST WHAT I FUCKS WITH DEEP DEEP.
You talk about simplicity,  why does that play such an important role in your design?

Straff: SIMPLICITY IS THE HARDEST TECHNIQUE TO PULL OFF BECAUSE IT HAS TO BE SIMPLY BEAUTIFUL IN AN ARTISTIC WAY PLUS IT SAVES TIME AND MONEY.
What’s really important to you in life?

Straff: GOD OBVIOUSLY.

Exiting the land of hues that is STRAFFITTI makes me think this is what it feels like coming down from an LSD trip, awed by the spectacle, downtrodden by the monochromes of real life and definitely eager to pop another pill of STRAFF. Interview by @AdedayoLaketu for @MoreBranches

THE CUTS : EP 02 Vol. 8

                   Ko-Jo Cue: Me Dat

Banging hip hop beats. Great delivery. Well measured boast. All these embalm the new single from Ko-Jo Cue. The BBnZ artiste has, for a while, been swinging from activeness (drop a tune or verse on a feature) to inactiveness (silence). The clamour for a new tape from YDL (Cue’s other moniker) has been on, but, Cue isn’t really bent on dropping any material soon, it seems. 

As he explained in an interview with BeatPhreak, he’s taking his time to create music he truly want to make. The pressure from fans won’t sway him. ‘Me Dat’ could be the precursor to a project from him. It could be just a single to assure fans he’s still here. ‘Now, I may not have a million dollars sitting in the bank but I surely feel like it’, Ko-Jo Cue opens his verse on this Sam 1 produced single. 

Reynolds (The Gentleman) – Ole

When I saw the tweet announcing “Ole”, I was expecting a pop song (that’s the kind of songs I’ve associated Reynolds with). Not only has ‘Ole’ influenced a mind change, it has introduced another side of Reynolds- his versatility and ability to hit notes pretty well. “Ole” is a ballad about a lost lover. The vulnerability and the ache associated with such a loss is present in the song. Reynolds, who doubles as the in-house producer for VI (Vision Inspired) Music, has moved from the third to the second spot on my artiste roaster for his label. The songwriting is beautiful, emotive and poetic as evidenced by this lyric: ‘The night was cold and my night stood still/ The minute she said that our love wasn’t real/ A tortured mind and a lonely face/ I’m fading away in this empty space‘.

Kuvie – Updated Catalogue

Music producer, Kuvie’s production catalogue is a tall one (if you compare it to his active years as a producer). Having worked with some of the biggest artistes around and releasing his own works, Kuvie shared link to his updated SoundCloud page. From old songs such as “Awo’a” to self produced songs like “Deep” and Joey B’s “Chorkor Special” (from the Darryl EP), the 32 tracks with a running time of 2:30:13 minutes is for everyone’s enjoyment. 

Casting Call for a Video Shoot

Are you a young female interested in featuring in an all Melanin video?

Do you have that Melanin that glows in the dark? You know, that kind that looks and tastes good with caramel.

If you do, then you SHOULD join a team of female creatives who plan on delivering MELANIN in a video by women and for women! Let’s show the world our melanin glow.

Contact the numbers in the poster above on how to get involved. Call/Text/WhatsApp us now!