DJ Semtex spearheaded the much needed conversation on Black British culture and it’s relationship with music.
The panelists included SMADE (Afro Nation), Dumi Oburota (Disturbing London), Whitney (Live Nation/The Ends festival) and Preye (SONY/Strawberries & Creem festival). Now, the discussion might take more time than you have but the dialogue is important. Here are 3 major things that you can take away from it:
Whitney describes what we know as ‘Afro-Swing’ as the entry point for people outside of Black British culture. These sub-genres reach commercial success and allow listeners of all cultures to gradually understand our music. This makes it more likely for our sound to go global!
Aside from the music itself, there can be obstacles within the business. Dumi details the process of tackling industry bosses who have low expectations of Afro-Caribbean inspired music, events and artists. It’s about educating ourselves and being intentional in our business moves. The objective is to push our culture forward.
Many of us can recall a time where mainstream music rarely reflected Black British culture. A major shift happened when D’Banj and Wizkid were breaking through with their sound. Years later we are in that space again. It’s exciting to witness the new wave of Afro-Caribbean artists (i.e Afro B, Yxng Bane etc) who are shifting the culture again and inviting more listeners!