Friday, July 31, 2015

Nia Fest 2015 in Virginia Beach - Exhibitors Wanted

Contact 757-932-0177 or email positivevibesdjs@gmail for 
exhibitor/vendor/sponsor information !

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

This Is Africa Opinion, Editor's Picks - Issue #44

This Is Africa Opinion, Editor's Picks - Issue #44

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Decolonising dress and fashion: Africanwear in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda

Decolonising dress and fashion: African wear in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda

By Bwesigye bwa Mwesigire

TIA's Bwesigye bwa Mwesigire looks at the prevalence of African Wear in East and West Africa and concludes that the law and political attitudes in Uganda and Kenya discourage the wearing of African clothes harsher than in Nigeria and Ghana


Where   is Voodoo in Afrofuturism?

Where is Voodoo in Afrofuturism?

By Bwesigye bwa Mwesigire

At a panel discussion held at the Goethe Zentrum Kampala conference room about Afrofuturism and the Afropolis, a question from the member of the audience, about the place of voodoo and African magic in Afrofuturist writing was left unanswered, TIA's Bwesigye bwa Mwesigire reports


Can Project Biro help Africa to overcome its maritimesecurity challenges?

Can Project Biro help Africa to overcome its maritime security challenges?

By Timothy Walker

If Africa is to overcome its maritime security challenges, its best bet is to increase its OPV capacity. Project Biro will allow South Africa to provide valuable lessons in purchasing and operating OPVs, along with opportunities to partner with SADC navies and utilise the freed-up frigates in joint operations. In this way, Biro could lead onto the creation of the African maritime ownership and agency called for in AIMS 2050 and envisioned in that well-worn phrase ­– 'African solutions for African problems'


South Africa joins the EU in the dogbox for abusing illegalAfrican migrants

South Africa joins the EU in the dogbox for abusing illegal African migrants

By Peter Fabricius

The irony of Zuma's Freedom Day speech was not lost on European diplomats. Zuma is wont to criticise EU policies towards Africa as neo-colonial. Now he finds himself in a rather uncomfortably similar predicament – as the object of sharp criticism for mistreating desperate African migrants. 'Welcome to our world,' said one of those diplomats, wryly


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Afro pop World Wide : Thomas Mapfumo: The War Years

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From:"Afropop WorldWide" <>
Date:Sat, May 9, 2015 at 11:13 AM
Subject:Thomas Mapfumo: The War Years

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Hello Imani,

On air this week is an encore of our Hip Deep program Thomas Mapfumo 1: The War Years” that explores the legendary early career of this truly original artist, whose 1970s music set the stage for the birth of a new nation, Zimbabwe. It features rare, unreleased recordings and recollections by Mapfumo, key band members, and prominent Zimbabweans who lived through the liberation struggle.
On the blog: It's live music season! Ben wrote about seeing free jazz legend Pharoah Sanders at Baby's All Right in Williamsburg. Geko Jones wrote us an introduction to his diverse Barrioteca Tropical set at the Red Bull Music Academy Festival this Saturday. And Steve Hochman delivered a field report from Angélique Kidjo's joyous performance at the New Orleans Jazz Festival. Angélique just released a new album that mixes Afropop and classical music called Angelique Sings. Check out Banning's review here! Tonight is the debut screening of Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai, the kinda-sorta remake of Purple Rain, starring Tuareg guitar sensation Mdou Moctar. Sam interviewed the film's director, Sahel Sound's Christopher Kirkley. Also, if you missed it, be sure to check out Sam's latest show, "Cuts from the Crypt," which explores the gems hidden away in Afropop's vault.

And we’re super excited to announce the publication of Banning’s superb new book Lion Songs: Thomas Mapfumo and the Music That Made Zimbabwe (Duke University Press).  It’s a great read. (And a 20 year labor of love!) Banning also put together a compilation of Thomas’ essential recordings and brief interview jewels from the man. The book will be available in bookstores on May 20 but if you’d like a signed copy, it is available online now from Banning’s web site.  

Thanks to everyone who joined us for our wonderful spring benefit party last Friday. Big thanks to Joel Bluestein for his hospitality. Timbila performed.  Banning read from his just-released book “Lion Songs,” and we celebrated our Peabody Institutional Award with gusto. We raised over $10,000, which will go to our ambitious archive project, preserving and developing our massive archive—sound recordings, video, photos, rare commercial recordings, documentation, and more. Feel free to add your support to our archive project.  

See Banning’s tribute to The Nile Project,” as last Saturday it wrapped up its four month U.S. concert tour extravaganza, showcasing artists from Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Uganda, and Kenya. I saw it three times over the four months and they just kept getting better. And they recorded an album on the road. So be on the lookout for that.

For New Yorkers, you can start planning your summers with concert listings from SummerStage and Celebrate Brooklyn. Our colleagues at Shared Interest, who do excellent work in southern Africa especially focused on women and micro enterprise, will hold  their annual Awards Dinner next Thursday May 14 with special honoree Graça Machel.

Big congrats to fellow board member Angélique Kidjo for receiving the David Rockefeller Bridging Leadership Award in recognition of international activism and humanitarian work. Well deserved! Past recipients include Nelson Mandela, Bill Clinton and Mo Ibrahim.


Sean and the team

Thomas Mapfumo 1: The War Years

Cuts from the Crypt

Tuareg Purple Rain Interview

Que Bajo?! Barrioteca Introduction

Angélique Kidjo Sings

Pharoah Sanders Live in Brooklyn

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Sam Backer, Senior Producer for New Media
and our Staff Writers: Jesse Brent, Katherine Cohen, Ben Richmond  

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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Peinillas and Popular Participation: Machete fighting in Haiti, Cuba, and Colombia

Peinillas and Popular Participation: Machete fighting in Haiti, Cuba, and Colombia


This article explores the history of fencing with machetes among people of African descent in Haiti, Cuba, and Colombia. The machete, a sacred icon of individual success and warfare in Africa, became for enslaved Africans a tool used in exploiting their labor. Yet they retained a mastery over this weapon through the widespread art of stick fighting. This mastery of arma blanca helped transform the machete into an important weapon in the national struggles of all three countries. Even in the early twentieth century the Colombian art of fencing with sticks and machetes was a widespread social practice among Afro-Caucanos that allowed them to demonstrate their individual honor as well as make important contributions to national struggles from independence to the conflict with Peru in Leticia. Although published accounts highlight the role of political and military elite, these counter-memories emphasize the common soldiers whose mastery of arma blanca made possible numerous national victories.

Visit my website to learn about my research and teaching:

Harakati za Waasi Martia Arts--Chinese and African Martial Arts:

"You can't separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom"
-Malcolm X

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Startup $$$ Hampton Roads. (Build Black Businesses)


inviting you to attend our upcoming workshop - Startup $$$ Hampton Roads.  I'm writing to extend a personal encourage you to attend.

Startup $$$ Hampton Roads is a two-part workshop designed to address what our clients tell us are the most challenging to growing their business - accounting and finance.  I'm sending you this email because I want you to attend and tell your associates to attend.  I want you and your associates to succeed, to have the financial savvy it takes to run a successful enterprise, and to employ the financial tools traditional businesses use every day to finance their growth.  So please, take this opportunity now to register.  Clear your calendar and save the date.   You'll be glad you did. 

Startup $$$ Hampton Roads is Saturday, August 8th from 9:00am to 4:00pm at the ODU Tri-Cities Higher Education Center in Portsmouth.  Please click here to register and secure your seat.

I look forward to seeing you there.  Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.


James R. Taylor, President

Virginia Housing and Community Development Corporation

866.931.5760  ext 109

866.931.5843 F


Friday, July 17, 2015

Obama and Freedom Riders


by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Barack Obama attempts to create a phony legacy as the prison "reform" president by extending clemency to 46 non-violent drug offenders – not all that many, by presidential standards. Yet, he went to the U.S. Supreme Court to keep 5,000 non-violent crack-cocaine offenders locked up. Obama's "sudden desire to look like the Great Emancipator is an ongoing publicity junket."


by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

South Africa's most militant labor leaders are pressing forward with plans to build a real socialist party to challenge the ANC government's capitulation to global capitalism. ANC loyalists this week locked the country's largest union and the labor federation's former general secretary out of a COSATU special Congress. The two traveled to the U.S., last week, seeking help from activists that supported the "Free South Africa" movement in the 80s.


A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

The consequences of the Great Recession "and the Obama administration's response to it" have fallen most heavily on Black children, who have been plunged into poverty at the highest levels ever recorded. Poverty rates have gone down for all children except Blacks – an example of actual American "exceptionalism."


A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Piecemeal and wholesale privatization of public schools has been the bipartisan agenda of Republicans and Democrats. Now top school districts are outsourcing teacher hiring to be sure they get the Wal-Mart style disposable temps to man the positions once held by experienced teachers connected with their students and communities.


by Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, editor and columnist

Eric Holder has been praised as a "civil rights"-oriented attorney general, but the only rights he has championed are those of the bankers, white vigilantes and killer cops. "Holder refused to press charges against millionaire banking executives who, he assured Wall Street, 'were too big to jail.'" Blacks have to make do with their Miranda warning rights – if they are lucky enough to survive an encounter with the police.


By Doug Martin at Hoosier School Heist Blog, and Diane Ravitch

Last week the American Federation of Teachers endorsed Hillary Clinton's presidential candidacy, without consulting more than a token slice of the union's membership. It's hard not to know that AFT leaders have turned their backs on teachers and thrown in with the privatizing politicians and consultants. Hillary too has her own family ties to school privatizers.


by Paul Street

The Confederate flag comes down at the capital of South Carolina, and smug white smiles go up all over America. "Meanwhile," writes the author, "savage racial disparities persist and even deepen thanks to the underlying societal, institutional, historical, and political-economic racism that churns on behind the curtain of an officially color blind and, yes, politically correct media and politics culture."


by John Pilger

The Greek people said "No" to the bankers in Brussels, but their supposedly "radical" Syriza leaders immediately said "Yes." What is the true political nature of Syriza? "Tsipras and his impressively-educated comrades were not radical in any sense of that cliched label, neither were they 'anti austerity.'" The consequence of their false leftism "is not resistance, but subservience."


by Theogene Rudasingwa

President Paul Kagame threw a mighty tantrum following the arrest in the UK of his spy chief, Gen. Emmanuel Karenzi Karake. But the exiled opposition party Rwanda National Congress has welcomed the arrest, applauding the new efforts by some Western nations to demand accountability from the brutal tyranny in Kigali.


Austerity Rendering Detroit Unfit for Habitation

A serious fire raged out control due to chronic low water pressure in Detroit, despite the majority Black city's location in one of the world's major fresh water regions. "The whole process of so-called rebuilding of Detroit has not been clearly thought out," said Abayomi Azikiwe, veteran activist and editor of the Pan African News Wire. "How can you rebuild a city when you don't have fundamental infrastructure, such as fire services, public safety, education, emergency services, simple things like being able to go to a supermarket?" The economic elite are "doing everything possible to drive out the African American population," he said, but poor infrastructure discourages white resettlement. "What you have is the anarchy of capitalism."

Big Business Tries to Roll Back Socialist Alternative in Seattle

Corporate contributions are pouring into Seattle Urban League chief Pamela Banks' campaign to unseat Kshama Sawant, the Socialist Alternative councilwoman who championed the city's $15 an hour minimum wage law. "It's not so much about my opponent's qualities," said Sawant, "It's because corporations, billionaires, the people who have an incentive to uphold the status quo, recognize that if we win re-election this year, then it really confirms to working people in Seattle and everywhere that we can prevail against the full might of big business and the political establishment."

Mumia: "Flags and Rags"

The heritage of the Confederate battle flag is "one of terror and violence in support of a system of organized theft of Black labor, in the name of white supremacy and Black subjugation," said Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation's best known political prisoner, in a report for Prison Radio. "Dylan 'Dumb and Dumber' Roof knew, instinctively, what the flag stood for."

Justices OK Painful Death Drug

The U.S. Supreme Court ended its term by allowing states to continue lethal injections with a cocktail that can cause horrific pain for condemned persons. "Prisoners remain less than human" in the High Court's eyes, said Kenneth A. Hartman, a writer and prison activist serving life in California. "How else can a decision that allows for deliberate torture be explained?"

Fear of Blacks Triggered 1776 War of Independence

White settlers turned against the their mother country partly in fear that the British Crown would put guns in the hands of Blacks, according to Dr. Gerald Horne, chairman of history and African American Studies at the University of Houston and author of more than 30 books, including The Counter-Revolution of 1776: Slave Resistance and the Origins of the United States of America. In 1775, the British colonial governor of Virginia established an "Ethiopian Regiment" to counter rebellious white settlers. "One of the factors that caused formerly patriotic British subjects to revolt against British rule was this 'Black scare' that, I argue, led to the formation of the United States of America," said Dr. Horne, in a lecture at the University of California at Santa Barbara.