06 March 2006

Monday's mp3: Kwaito! Oscar!

I don't think of the Academy Awards as a great promoter of world music and culture. But their selection last night of the South African film Tsotsi as Best Foreign Language Film is certain to gain attention for the soundtrack, which is dominated by kwaito. Sometimes called "South African Hip Hop," kwaito (the term translates as "anger") seems to run the gamut from cheezy knockoffs of western hip hop to amazing blends of modern beats with roots drumming and choral singing. Read a good background of kwaito here.

The Tsotsi soundtrack is dominated by South African artist Zola (not to be confused with barefoot South African runner Zola Budd). I haven't yet seen the film or heard the soundtrack (which also include tracks by Vusi Mahlasela), so until I do here is a track to whet your appetite for kwaito.

[mp3] Jimmy B: "Make Me Bounce"
From Kwaito: South African Hip Hop (Stern's / Earthworks)
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