NYC in the 1980s.
”After picking up a camera at the age of 15, Jamel Shabazz has been unknowingly become the first “visual documentarian” of hip hop. For over 30 years he’s captured the world around him. Every frame of that world is a time portal that sparks emotion stemming from the scenes they represent. And if there is ever a glimpse into the foundations of street wear and its surrounding culture, it can be found in the pages of his first book.
“Back In The Days” is real deal documentation as it pertains to the origins of hip hop, not to mention hip hop fashion. No 2oK a day models. No makeup artists. No food trucks. The models in the book don’t need runways because they lived the life of style. Jamel Shabazz was there to capture it all.”
Purchase here: http://www.jamelshabazz.com/monographs.html
Music: The “Doom Soul” Generation.
First things first. The ‘doom soul’ descriptor is not one that I can take credit for in any. I first came across these words after reading about Somali-Canadian artist Cold Specks. She used it to describe her sound and ever since then, upon discovering new artists and listening to musicians already in my collection, it’s become a recurring way to describe much of the music I’ve been hearing - and loving - from African/African-descended/Black artists both in Africa and the diaspora.
Through these observations, I’ve spent some time compiling the stand out artists in this new generation that fall under the somewhat wide umbrella of the borrowed ‘doom soul’ term. Not one of the artists you’ll hear on my accompanying music mix/playlist sound like each other. And yet, there are several recurring features that tie them all together.
Whether Kelela or Kwabs, BLK JKS or Benjamin Clementine, all these artists have soulful sensibilities attached to their vocal abilities, lyrical content, and melodic inclinations. Each containing their own mixture of elements of soul, r&b, indie, folk, blues, eclectic electronic sounds, the result is usually an emotionally charged hybrid of music with a slightly gloomy aura. Haunting, wholesome and incredibly powerful.
Listen to my Afro-Doom Soul playlist featuring Cold Specks, Mirel Wagner, Benjamin Clementine, Kwabs, Kelela and more.
All Africa, All the time.