Closeup August 20, 2019
Closeup: French Afro-Colonial Memory and Music

France has a pretty unique relationship to its former colonies, sharing a strong common history and a common language, but also painful episodes not really taught at school—neither in France nor in Africa.

In France and in French-speaking African countries today, there is a new generation of artists and promotors who are ready to tell history with music. They are unearthing unknown periods of French colonial history. In this show, we'll hear about dark times of Franco-African history, specifically from Cameroon before its independence.

We'll dig into memories and secrets, and hear echoes from the tropical forest where bodies and facts were hidden, with artists who are tackling fault lines of France's colonial past and unearthing harsh reality with sweet voices such as singer Blick Bassy who released a new album 1958, a tribute to the freedom fighter Rubem Um Nyobe.

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