Who is Tony Allen? The essence of Afrobeat

Despite being recognized widely as one of the most influential artists of the Afrobeat music scene in Nigeria in the 1970s/1980s, it's surprising that Tony Allen has not received more attention in literature and media about this style. Luckily, his autobiography was released in 2013 with very positive reviews and we can't wait to read it. Here's an article from Another Africa about the book and a bit more about the artist.

Below is a short film about his music and the album, "Secret Agent" (released in 2009).

And here is a video with the full album for your listening pleasure. 

Egypt's New Craze: Electro Chaabi

"While Egypt has traditionally been the beating heart of classical Arabic music, with legendary singers such as Oum Kalthoum and Abdel Halim Hafez, a new craze is taking over the Arab world’s most populous nation: Electro Chaabi. Inspired by the down-and-dirty music played at street parties and weddings, this new populist dance form combines a punk spirit with a hip hop attitude set against a furious cascade of drums, bass and electronic vocals." -  from MonoDuo Films website

This film was recently shown at a few select festivals in the United States, including the Fist Up Film Festival in Oakland, where the filmmaker -- Hind Meddeb -- was in attendance and allowed viewers to ask questions after the film. It seems to have been shown at only a few festivals in Europe and the United States this year, so keep your eyes peeled for showings near you. 

Read more about the film from the Seattle International Film Festival, learn about Chaabi music, and watch the trailer below.