DanDana Episode 16 | Black Music Matters Thu, 2020-08-20 22:21

In light of the multiple events that have swept the globe this year, DanDana team decided to reflect on some of the music that matters. As protests highlighting the importance of black lives after the brutal killings of George Floyd and Brayonna Taylor and the rise of the decentralized Black Lives Matter movement, we felt the urge to shine a light on the rich musical heritage of black people in the region from Andalusia to Mongolia and from Yemen to Anatolia. 

In this episode we dug deep into the musical heritage of the region, and discussed the music produced by some prominent figures on the music scenes like Hamza El Din, Ali Hassan Kuban or Sitti Bent Saad, to more forgotten names like Dahi Ben Elwalid, Asmar Omar and Aster Aweke. 

All of these wonderful singers and musicians have captured parts of their struggle and the oppression they have undergone in their melodies and lyrics. From Ethiopia to Djibouti, Zanzibar to Bahrain, these works stand as an acoustic testimony to injustices past and present, that we all listen to for inspiration and reflection. 

NB: Please excuse some laptop clicking and slight mic muffling. 


Sitti Bent Saad – Ashee Regea Swahili

Maalouma – Khayala

Hamza El Din – Shortunga (The Spirits)

Aisha Al Marta – Ya Leil Dana

Aster Aweke – Y’Shebellu

Khojali Osman – Malo Law Safeetna Inta

Amira Khair – Manaok (Forbidden) 

Ali Hassan Kuban – Habibi 

Tsehaytu Beraki – Atzmtom Keskisom (Tigrigna)

Dahi Ben Elwalid – Ya Man Hawah

Alnubia Band – Koban

Asma Omar – Buuraha U Dheer (The Highest Mountains)