Music in education: a living relic of Western Europe’s colonial mentality

by Nathan Holder Since music entered the National Curriculum in 1988, the UK’s approach to musical education has been grounded in Western Classical traditions. From Palestrina to Schoenberg, Baroque to 20th Century Experimentalism, students are routinely taught the fundamentals of the art largely by studying ‘The Great Composers’, by learning the conventions of western classical… Read More

How to be Desi in 2017: Riz MC and Heems are forging a new cultural reflection of South Asians in diaspora

by Iman Sultan  I don’t normally get moved by music videos, but Swet Shop Boys’ internet-released video, “Aaja”, a track off their Cashmere album, released late last year, felt like salvation A tribute to Pakistani social media star Qandeel Baloch, who was murdered last summer, and whose very death made her an icon, the video… Read More

Dropping the mic in his own time: as-salamu alaykum Yasiin Bey

by Jamal Mehmood Earlier this year, the artist formerly known as Mos Def gave his farewell performances in London. Hiphop’s own whirling dervish, who dared to whirl and pray on a simply decorated stage, dropping rose petals on a floor already filled with balloons. This was the Yasiin show. There was no formal set list… Read More

Meet Caleb Femi, the Young Poet Laureate telling stories of love at the chickenshop

Heartbreak and Grime will make you shake your head in shame and/or disgust at the things women had to put up with, the bizarre façades which define teen relationships in general and the blatant misogyny that so many of us once drank unquestioningly. Read More

Twenty Years or More From Stardom

By Stephanie Phillips When our modern definition of a rock star is clouded by white, middle class male egos driven need to be the only stars, who else should we look up to? Stephanie Phillips looks at Bessie and Twenty Feet From Stardom to find the black women behind some of rock n roll’s greatest… Read More

Review: Arab Christmas “Christians have been part of Gaza’s fabric since time immemorial”

by Hamja Ahsan    It is a Friday night and I am inside the Rich Mix, a venue at the foot of East London’s Brick Lane, where three musical acts organised by Arts Canteen transport me into a Byzantine Temple, during Queen Zanubia’s reign of Palmyra in Iraq and Syria (269CE). The venue is where… Read More

Photo Gallery: Jazz Artists of Old

What is jazz? “If you have to ask, then you’ll never know.” ~Louis Armstrong Kicha’s images represent vintage snapshots into the lives of African Americans. The good, the bad and the ugly.   Click on the images for photo descriptions Find Kicha on twitter @RollinOnARiver For more vintage photos of African Americans visit KICHA A… Read More