Beats, Podcasts + Life (8.18.19)


Peace! This week’s theme for “Beats, Podcasts + Life” is focused on Black August and the art and culture uniting us across the African Diaspora. We are ONE.

Nyota Parker “Energy” (Prod. Kiid Banger Beat$)

South Africa’s rising star Nyota Parker found me through her friend and music collaborator Sun Zulu, a young emcee based in Baltimore, who shared my newsletter with Nyota’s mom and manager.

So proud to announce my new marketing partnership with Nyota. The 19-year-old music artist is pushing boundaries with her own genre of “Trazz” (Rap/Hip-Hop/Jazz/Trap/Soul).

We’re working hard to make Nyota’s upcoming #EnergyTour19 a success! Listen to Nyota’s Energy EP — featuring Martin Khan, SunZulu and Lowekey — on her new website


Femi Kuti “What Will Tomorrow Bring?”

A great comrade introduced me to Femi Kuti — the eldest son of Afrobeat pioneer Fela — during Black August 2011. (Shout out to the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement for the art, film, and music festivals they hold every Black August to support political prisoners.)

Recorded more than 20 years ago, Shoki Shoki still begs the timely question: “What Will Tomorrow Bring?”


The Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975

The Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1995 is a documentary with rare footage of Angela Davis, Huey P. Newton, Stokely Carmichael and others, as documented by Swedish media and co-produced by Danny Glover. The film features commentary by Talib Kweli, Erykah Badu, and Questlove (also in charge of the score). I saw it at Brecht Forum in NYC during Black August 2011.


Casanova “2AM” feat. Tory Lanez and Davido (Prod. 30 Roc)

Casanova survived the streets of Flatbush, Brooklyn, served time in state prison, and created a promising entertainment career. Recently, Casanova traveled to Lagos for the Afrobeat song and video “2 AM” — featuring singers Tory Lanez and Davido — on the Free At Last EP. (Davido has an amazing story of breakthroughs as a music artist from Nigeria.)


Earn Your Leisure “Episode 29: Mama Africa”

On this podcast episode of Earn Your Leisure, the hosts — Rashad Bilal, financial advisor, and Troy Millings, educator — interviewed international business expert Fritz Charles about Africa. Fritz dropped jewel after jewel on the Motherland’s economy.


Burna Boy “Ye” (Prod. Phantom)

Burna Boy shares his Nigerian pride as he rejoices “Ye” throughout the entire song. “‘Ye’ is a song that essentially shows the unrelenting nature of Nigerians (where I’m from),” said Burna Boy. “We thrive despite the leadership and circumstances.” The combination of feel-good music and meaningful messages reminds me of Fela’s music and mission.


Siimba Liives Long “Cocaine Bimbie” (Prod. Felly)

Ethiopian emcee Siimba Liives Long easily became one of my favorite new artists. With self-empowering, revolutionary lyrics, “Cocaine Biimbie” is an anthem for sure. The video shows communities across his stomping grounds Brooklyn, Ethiopia and South Africa, with Siimba rappin alongside lions. A sonic and visual treat.


That’s all she wrote for this week. Sign up for my newsletter to receive music updates. Playlists coming soon.

Tasha Digital