Musvism: The ‘Black Power’ Soundtrack

10 June 2017

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Venue: Arcola Theatre

Organiser: Toyin Agbetu

Toyin Agbetu is a community educator, artist-activist-anthropologist and founder of Ligali, a Pan African human rights based organisation.

Activism comes in many forms, for centuries Pan Africanists across the world have had the assistance of artist-activists to help provide the musical backdrop for resistance to enslavement, colonialism, racism and today’s globalisation. From blues to jazz, reggae to Afrobeat, many artists have used their gifts to offer social commentary and solidarity in opposition to injustice and oppression across the world. Be it Billy Holidays’ “Strange Fruit”, Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power”, Fela Kuti’s “Zombie” or John Coltrane’s “Alabama”. However the civil rights struggle was not limited to the US. Despite African people being whitewashed from the official history of human rights in the UK, many British based artists have also contributed to the struggle with tracks from acts such as Steel Pulse and their “Ku Klux Klan” to Des’ree’s ode to standing firm with “I Ain’t Moving”. Whilst this story may not be told in British schools, it is archived in the many songs, films, poetry and literature of that period. Musvism is a fun and educational presentation using conscious music from across Africa, the US, the Caribbean and Britain to chart the route of socio-political activism across many eras and genres. Come learn African history though great music.

This is a Nyansapo program by the Ligali Organisation for the AntiUniversity festival. “The AU - Teaching and Learning as Direct Action”