Posts Tagged ‘music’

Radio Papesse awards our contribution to sound-art on Florence tram

2019/07/28

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radio continental drift proudly shares the news that Radio Papesse awarded

our sound-art contribution to “Benjamin – sounds along the tramway”

among 90 submitted works with one of the two prizes.

We are delighted to contribute to this inspiring sound-art festival by Radio Papesse.

Benjamin is a sound-art festival for the Florence tramway which will take place form 10 – 13 October 2019.

We really liked the project and felt inspired by the idea to

join commuters to a community of listeners for what ever brief moments.

Read more at

RADIO PAPESSE

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Breaking Barriers – DJ Kwe unites indigenous women in music

2019/04/24

Crystal DJ Kwe Favel “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” album was released in early April 2016. Kwe’s dance tracks of electronic drum music are dedicated to the Tonga people in Binga Zimbabwe.

Kwe herself belongs to the Cree and Metis, indigenous people of BC Canada. DJ Kwe – that is, “DJ native woman” [pronounce: kway] – listened to many of the 2012 recordings from Binga by radio continental drift; she heard her relations and ancestors speak in the Voices of Binga:

This is the story of my people…” she wrote to me, “i want to make an album of my music dedicated to the Tonga women…”. And she did…

Award ceremony at Damba Primary School 2012

Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” went public the very day I took off to Binga to join Zubo Trust women on the journey to their own media production. “Women document women stories” is an oral history collection recorded by Zubo women in their villages, communities and Women Forums.

When I traveled around Lake Kariba to join women producers at Zongwe FM in Zambia, oral history became “radio active” and Binga women recordings built a radio-bridge between Tonga communities both sides of the Zambezi.

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DJ Kwe’s dance tracks were part and parcel of these three-in-one journeys. Her music joint women across frontiers in listening to each others stories, uniting indigenous knowledge from Canada and Zimbabwe in contemporary dance tracks, and marrying oral-history-in-remix to contemporary electronic media and music.

 

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Women on-air Mweezya Sinazongwe

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Prior to the release of “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”, and starting from Kwe’s first contact to me, another amazing, but much more hidden journey unfolded… The album was produced in a year long email and listening correspondence between DJ Kwe’s studio on the West coast of Canada and my attic room somewhere on the Eastern edge of the Ruhr-Valley in Germany.

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The journey here unfolds entirely between two pairs of ears and imaginations. Crystal would choose the tracks which spoke to her most clearly and which she wanted to remix; send me her tracks packaged in her thoughts and descriptions of musical elements; I would listen, and listen again, and write comments, recommend different or related recordings, highlight certain excerpts, and package it all with my storytelling of local experiences in Binga and bits of ChiTonga knowledge.

Crystal DJKwe Favel turn-table and Zubo women Ilala bag copy

In finalising the Album, DJ Kwe wrote letters of appreciation and gratitude to all the vocals featured in “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”. Displayed here in image are the letters for tracks 2 and 9 both addressed to Abbigal Muleya, at the time monitoring- and evaluations officer with Zubo Trust.

 

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Abbi tells the story of the traditional team work of Tonga women, how it can even break barriers for women, and how it came to stand at the very centre of Zubo women’s work.

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Download the Letters of Appreciation From DJ Kwe

During my stay in Binga in 2016, I made an effort that the letters, appreciation, and music of DJ Kwe reached firstly those who were featured in the music. This included a visit to Siachilaba Primary School meeting Mr Kelias (former Head of School; track 4, The Baobab Tree) and Jossam Munkuli, keeper of the horns of Tonga Simonga musicians (track 14 Revitalise our culture).

 

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Together with Luyando Muyalali (tracks 10 and 14), we walked the 8 km from Manjolo to her native Damba. The Tonga Anthem included in the album’s first track was sung by children of Damba Primary School and recorded during an award ceremony under the tree…

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Mrs Chilowana Senior Teacher – it is not so easy for the girls…

2019/04/05

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Sinazongwe Primary School was established in 1958 – i.e. at the time of the forced resettlement of the Tonga people. Over the 50 years since it was established, the school didn’t have one female head teacher… as Mrs Chilowana tells us.

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Mrs Chilowana has been in the teaching services for 25 year; the past 10 years as a Senior Teacher at Sinazongwe Primary/ Secondary School. In the interview, we ask Mrs Chilowana to give us a little insight in to the life of a woman in employment and public service in the rural areas of Sinazongwe district. In the first track, Mrs Chilowana tells a bit of her own story…

It’s not so easy…”

In the main part of the interview, we ask Mrs Chilowana to describe for us the social expectations on girl children in the community and how these community customs translate in to challenges in young women’s lives and education…

Girls are expected to do much of the home chose…”

There are various programmes in place to sensitize the community, lighten the plight of the girls and take steps of changing community habits. In the last part of the interview, Mrs Chilowana describes some of the “moderate changes” and tells us i.a. about the activities of the Guidance Office, a re-entry policy to school for young mothers and the involvement of the various stakeholders in the area.

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One of our responses to the situation Mrs Chilowana describes in her interview was “Basimbi Radio” – radio with and for girls, a special venture throughout the school holidays in August with weekly workshops and live shows. Music: DJ Kwe

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The Radio-Bridge Compilation has some powerful tracks, tools for us, that we often played in our Basimbi Radio shows like this remix by Feralmind (London woman DJ) based on a recording by Zubo Trust’s Margaret Munkuli of Labecca singing a warning song for girls…

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Gogo – an ancient voice of the future

2019/03/28

 

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Thembi Ngwabi prefers to be called Gogo; ugogo meaning “granny, grandmother” in Ndebele. Even in 2012, when we recorded our first interview at Amakhosi Cultural Centre, the title of the elder and, an ancestral calling was already with Thembi. In 2013, I found her just relocated to the Lupane bush, in search of a realisation for her calling, and with a programme of cultural dance for local women and children at hand. We documented also this encounter with recordings.

The rain rituals have taken over my life…

In the present recording from October 2018 made at CoCont (Cont’s place) in Lupane, you may listen to the story of a demanding calling in Ugogo’s own words and voice. She describes her transformation from a young creative woman grown up in town (Bulawayo), a dancer, bass-guitarist, director of plays and films and of the Amakhosi Performing Arts Academy to a rapidly-aged, traditional rain-dancer in the Lupane bushland who follows spiritual instructions to build a new rain-making shrine which, as she has is linked straight to the Njelele shrine…

Almost everyone in Binga knows Maalila…

I ask Gogo in particular to tell us about her recent research in Binga. She had discovered that the geographically and historically closest rain-maker to her area in Lupane had lived in Binga. They went for a two-weeks research to Binga, and got to know the story of Maalila. He used to perform rain-making rituals at Binga’s hot springs until the Zimbabwe government and National Parks claimed the land as private property. Based on Gogo’s research, a thirteen-episode TV series about Maalila was developed and produced in Binga.

We need to go back to where we lost ourselves…

I also encourage Gogo to talk about her role as a woman in local culture and a woman leader of a new spiritual centre. I’m interested in Gogo’s contemporary open-mind now joint by an ancient voice; and curious about what I hear as a balance between a revival of culture and a celebration of diversity. Gogo ends the interview on a strong call and vision for her people… “we are fake… we don’t know what we are doing… we need to go back to where we lost ourselves…then, we can move on…”

Ugogo and her girl apprentice perform a traditional rain-making song.

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I felt shy photographing Ugogo… thus the pictures show mainly the dry Lupane bushland… and the trail of what was Cecil Rhodes’ dead-straight road through the bush….

Penny Yon – a voice of inspiration

2019/03/22

…and, a hand or two of crucial support to many artists in Zimbabwe and beyond, that’s the musician and arts admin Penny Yon.

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In 2012, I managed to lure Penny away from her demanding work at Book Cafe/ Pamberi Trust, and record this interview with her. An amazing storyteller, Penny writes her-story as she speaks and a couple of other histories in the Zimbabwe Arts and BaTonga cultural exchange too…

At the time, just before my first visit to Binga as a guest of Basilwizi Trust, I was particularly interested hearing Penny’s experiences of life in Binga; as Penny lived there for a number of years with her family working for Keith Goddard’s Kunzwana Trust with and for the musicians in Binga, and later, for the Tonga.Online project jointly with Peter Kuthan and the Zimbabwe Austrian friendship Association.

Hear Penny’s account of the Tonga.Online project reaching for the first time across Lake Kariba from Binga to Sinazongwe….

Penny’s audio history-writing was very recently a poignant contribution to live shows on Zongwe FM, when we were re-visiting steps in storytelling the long journey of inter/cultural relations and exchange across Lake Kariba between the Tonga people and especially, with Zongwe FM, the beginnings of Tonga radio-bridging across the Zambezi (stay tuned as we’ll also soon archive the Zongwe FM shows of 2018…!)

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Penny Yon – a voice of inspiration in remix…

Before travelling to Binga in 2016 for the project with Zubo Trust “Women document women stories”, we run a remix call-out in support of the project and Binga women. It was clips from Penny’s 2012 interview recordings which scored the largest number of remixes in the call-out… hear just some… more here

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Women on-air at ResonanceFM

2019/03/12

In case you missed the live shows on Resonance FM for International Women’s Day 2019 or, want to listen again, here’s your chance to listen to the interviews of NND presenter of  “the workplace” on Resonance:

In the second half of the show, you can hear Rosemary Cumanzala, Director of Zubo Trust talk live from Binga Zimbabwe about Zubo’s economic empowerment projects with  many hundreds of women in rural Zambezi Valley. Music, first Canada Nation’s woman DJ, Crystal DJ Kwe Favel.

Following, Samba Tonga, co-founder of the Women’s History Museum talks live from Lusaka Zambia about the idea and activities of this initiative which currently re-writes history in Zambia in many creative ways.

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And here also the precursor for the show on International Women’s Day, an interview with radio continental drift on “the workplace” at Resonance FM:

“to kick off Women’s History Month 2019, and as a precursor to a special extended episode of The Workplace on International Women’s Day 2019, NND talks to sound and radio artist Claudia Wegener, who founded Radio Continental Drift in the streets of Johannesburg, about the training she conducted with women of Zubo Trust in Zimbabwe – an organisation which focuses on the economic empowerment of women.”

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“I was the only girl…”

2019/03/10

The story of DJ Petronella recorded in Lusaka 2012, recently inspired young women presenters at the community radio Zongwe FM in Sinazongwe Zambia; especially one clip went on-air numerous times in the Zambezi Valley… reactions are also documented … and remixed further…

Encouraged by her Mum, Petronella went for auditions at ZNBC… She was the only girl… Got it! …and this became the start of her career in radio.

We made the recording with DJ Petronella at Kulima tower in the floors of Joy FM Lusaka where she was working at the time in 2012. Listen to Petronella…!

The recording and story from DJ Petronella inspired vivid response from DJ Mo and DJ Nono in a Zongwe FM Family Show in July 2018. The studio – as usual filled with male Zongwe presenters but plans for “Basimbi Radio” already in the pipeline, the women presenters, Monica and Nosiko were delighted to grasp the opportunity for a shout-out to the women and girls in the community to make their voices heard.

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listen to a clip from the Zongwe Family show 

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Excerpts from this on-air show went out even further with the jingle for “Basimbi Radio” a weekly radio opportunity with and for young women on Zongwe FM. Music by Crystal DJ Kwe Favel from the 2016 Album “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”.

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Radio-Bridge (pre-release)

2018/04/20

Together with the team of radio-makers at Sinazongwe Community Radio, Zongwe FM and the women of Zubo Trust in Binga, we are proud and happy launching a special pre-release track, remix gift by DJ Kwe to the forthcoming compilation “Radio-Bridge across the Zambezi”.

A compilation of 24 tracks by more than 50 contributors from 17 countries is awaiting you.

Enjoy the listening and Stay Tuned!

All proceeds from the compilation’s online sales will benefit radio-makers in training both side of the Zambezi. Twalumba loko, thank you! for your resonant solidarity!

Hear and support fair_play 2

2018/03/30

We are proudly part of fair_play 2, hand-in-hand with our co-ZuboTrust-sister Chiza Mwindi, amazing “storyteller of rocks” from a place at the Zambezi called Binga, now climbing academic ladders elsewhere ! For the music we gratefully acknowledge Alan Dunn and his “Breaking the Sound Barrier” project.

The second Fair_Play compilation brings together 80 works by 90 female identifying or trans artists not only from French speaking countries but also from India, Tasmania, Syria, Brazil, Egypt, Estonia, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Austria, USA, UK, Australia, Spain, Canada, Czech Republic, Mexico, Argentina, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Zimbabwe, China, Morocco …

The proceeds of this compilation, go towards building visibility and distribution tools for the artists, such as a website, events, a label.

It’s Women’s Turn

2017/12/23

Crystal DJKwe Favel turn-table and Zubo women Ilala bag copy

One of my favourite pictures I came across in 2017!

You are looking at a bag woven from Ilala Palm by Zubo Trust women in Binga Zimbabwe on the “work bench” of spiritual turn-tablelist Crystal Favel aka DJKwe in BC Canada…

Encounters of women’s work and vision can extend across history in to the present moment and join distant cultures anew as ancient relations… once Binga Women used to weave their patterns in traditional bead-work; when beads become unavailable or unaffordable, their creativity didn’t stop there, but they transferred the old patterns of Tonga bead-costumes in to their basket-weaving… Zubo women didn’t stop there with their art but found new form in to which to weave their Ilala: hand-bags, laptop-bags and more… Crystal DJKwe Favel joins the round of women’s wisdom on cultural continuity in change, adds beat to knowledge and lets it/ us dance… from beats to beads and baskets to hand-bags and back… in “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga” :

In purchasing the Album “Radio Remixes Voices of Binga”, you’ll support the healing arts of DJ Kwe and the work of women for women across the globe. From the online sales, 50% of proceed go to project work with women in Binga via Zubo Trust.

Twalumba loko ! Thank you for listening ! Thank you for you support !


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