Wednesday 30 September 2015

Goodbye September, birthdays and Ky-mani Marley

For the 1st time in years I didn't bake a birthday cake.
I took what's known as... 'time out..'
and as a result.. this year..

.. a cake was bought for me
Happy birthday to me, and my daughter

As one card said.. thank god for granting me (us) another year

My 1st birthday without my bro wishing me happy earthday.. only for me to do the same 7 days later

It was a bright and sunny day in London today
The last day of September.. a day I love, and some late summer sun

See you September ( all being well) next year

Monday 28 September 2015

Signs and wonders

Ti has had really bad tonsillitis for over a week now. Seriously, when your 'child' is unwell.. you don't rest
Anywho.. this evening, as I was telling him that soup was on the menu for him ( again) he looked at me .. quite forlorn
'I really don't want soup mum.'. 'I don't want soup, your aubergine dish.. or anything soft like that.. I just want real food!'
'Eat to nourish your body Ti not for fun'..

Then the door knocked...
On answering, the upstairs neighbour presented Ti with a plate of food..
Apparently, he dropped his BBQ in our back garden earlier today and decided to apologize to Ti, and thank him for his help with a plate of some tasty Turkish grub

he didn't look like this...

The meat looked great, the salad looked great, and it smelled really good
'Wow..' said Ti.. 'that was a sign from god'

then he tripped and nearly dropped the lot.

It was nice of our neighbour though.. helped me out there too!
Ti got to eat some 'real food'

Kandia Kora - Béré N'na

From Guinea - Conakry
Cool track

Saturday 26 September 2015

DJ Xclusive ft. Banky W & Niyola - Tonight

Banky W - High Notes

Etana - I Rise

Delroy Wilson - Honey

I heard this today and had forgotten how much I liked it.
Revival selection

Brymo - Duro

A film about Sierra Leone's environmental challenges [ journeyman pictures]

The film below set in Sierra Leone was made in 2009. I came across it embedded in an article in the Telegraph.
In view of the recent flooding which has taken place, I was drawn to learn more about the environmental challenges the country faces.

Initially I found it slightly negative and a little damning, but I decided not be overly sensitive, but to watch objectively, and can say that equally, many good points are raised here.
The issue of people living in slums are the same all over the world, and are by no means unique to Sierra Leone [click] Nigeria, India.. the list goes on.

Many blame capitalism or rather neoliberalism and the free market for the increase in inequality and poverty, especially for those living in developing countries.. countries most reliant on foreign aid, and impacted by structural adjustment policies.

Sierra Leone is incredibility beautiful. From the moment I arrived, I was in love with its beauty, its character, its soul.

Slums, wherever they may be; present (in my opinion) many interesting yet paradoxical attributes. Whilst they can be viewed as an example of communal living, with the kind of extended family structures and support networks in place that would benefit any person, they are also self perpetuating.

Perhaps it's easy for me to say.. don't litter where you live.
Perhaps it's easy for me to say, badger your government representative or chief to improve refuge collection, safe water and washing facilities... work out a system together,
Of course it's easy for me to say. I was born an raised in the UK, in London. Water ever present in the taps, electricity at the flick of a switch and the refuge collected every week.
Do I consider where the refuge goes once it leaves me?.. if I'm honest..probably not , but I should.
Why?... well a great deal of our electronic waste ends up in places like ghana ( for example)
Some electronic good are made with specifications just to last a few years.
Some may say well... it's an income for those at the other end of the chain... its a living, an opportunity, a job
Perhaps... but I guess I'm saying I need to be more aware, more conscious and alot more thoughtful.

But as people, we sometimes become complacent. we adapt to our surrounding. Often, we accept.. in the belief that we have no hope of change. So.. things stay the same. The challenge is to break out of the inertia and believe that not only is change possible, but that we as people .. deserve it.

Should there still be slums.. when we are surrounded by so much wealth?

The Flying Stars [Witness - an Aljazeera documentary]

A moving documentary about Sierra Leone's premier amputee football team.


By Ngardy Conteh George and Allan Tong

'The civil war of Sierra Leone lasted from 1991-2002 and in that time rebel soldiers waged a campaign of terror by amputating innocent children, while soldiers stepped on landmines. Today, one in five amputees in the world lives in Sierra Leone.

Many amputees in this country [Sierra Leone] beg on the streets and suffer housing and job discrimination in a country that regards amputees as ugly reminders of that war. If left untreated, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder makes victims lash out at those around them, thereby perpetuating the cycle of violence unleashed by the civil war of the 1990s.

Amputee football is one of the few ways for the amputees to band together and find solace. The 'beautiful game' heals, and at the very least it provides structure and routine to the amputees' lives. Football builds self-confidence and proves to their countrymen that the amputees are as capable as anyone as they soar across the football pitch to create acrobatic plays.

The main subject of The Flying Stars is Bornor, the fiery and charismatic captain of The Flying Stars team. He leads his teammates to play in friendlies and competitive tournaments around the world, literally broadening their horizons.

At home, however, he faces the everyday reality of feeding his family and himself. He begs and he strives to raise sponsor money, including that of the team's patron, an American medical charity headed by Seattle nurse Lynn Pelton, who appears in the film. Sometimes it is enough, but just barely.

The war never completely left Bornor. He sees it with every step he takes on his crutches, and feels it each spring when his "anniversary pain" seizes his soul. However, his wife and children give him hope for the future.

Another theme of this film is that of the amputee players weaning themselves off foreign charities and finding ways to fend for themselves. Bornor embarks on studying a trade (repairing portable generators) as an investment in his future.

Sure, football gives him brotherhood, but a job feeds his family. Will he stay the course in a country with chronic unemployment and illiteracy?'

Source: Al Jazeera

Monday 21 September 2015

Coups in 'Africa'.. business as usual.. ? ft Timaya - Hallelujah

Good morning

So the coup in Burkina Faso is to be reversed?
Seriously.. what is going on there

I understand that the Presidents of Senegal and Gambia assisted in mediation talks
It's reported that part of the problem is that those who were linked 'favourably' /loyal to, former president Blaise are illegible to stand for election which some think is unfair.

Pic - Gilbert Diendéré, a general and former top aide to former president Blaise Compaoré.

I think 'situation unstable' is a fair analysis.


Labours new leader handed our current PM David Cameron a gold plated soap box at last weeks PMQ's.
Labour can take the moral high ground but will probably have to get much tougher when dealing with the Tories.. otherwise forget it. Moral high ground plus economic viability =win win iMO


Autumn is here.
Feeling rough


Thursday 17 September 2015

Sierra Leone hit by severe flooding and landslides.. .

The worst in the countries entire history

When I got these pictures last night.. the scale of the damage still didn't hit home
'Eh?!.. Where is this?!'.. I asked..
I could barely believe it.. roads I had driven along only weeks ago completely submerged in water
Oh no!.. Wow
.. the scale of the damage would become even clearer in the morning

Homes washed away, the loss of life reportedly numbering 4, although that figure fluctuates.. it's not clear
Today the President authorised use of the national stadium for the hundreds now homeless

It hasn't been an easy time for Sierra Leonians at home of late.. that's for sure

Not at all

The rebuilding must begin.. anew.. again...

More pics [click]

News & Opinions [click]

The Sierra Leone Telegraph

DJ Ganyani - Talk To Me (feat Layla)

Dj Ganyani ft. Wandaboy - Better Days

Sunday 13 September 2015

Hackney Carnival 2015 - a few sights & sounds

Hackney was the 'place to be ' today... if Carnival is your thing...
Full on Soca & masquearde.. lots of fun
Steel Band Pantonic sounded fantastic.. tight..
and we enjoyed a nice mix of floats, with some representing Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Brazil, of course Trinidad, Montserrat and the other Islands...and of course, Hackney.. and Notting Hill

Never read this brief History before

Okay... for those wanting to know more

Saturday 12 September 2015

All Change; Jeremy Corbyn Is the new Leader of the Labour Party - Tom Watson .. Deputy Leader

Tom Watson

Awilo Longomba, Psquare - Enemy Solo

Nice Nigerian/Congolese collaboration.. love the vid

'Third termism in Africa'.. clinging on to power .. or a commitment to finish the job

Presidents 'clinging on to power' is a view commonly held by many when they consider African Presidents
'Third termism in 'Africa'. is a phrase which is being used to describe what is often cited as the current attempts by African presidents approaching the end of thier final term, to amend the constitution to enable them to run again..

Rwandan President, Paul Kagame

I can only imagine the frustration faced by opposition parties if told...'actually, you stand no chance of election at least for another 5 years'.

So... if two terms are not long enough.. (and in reality maybe it isn't)... just how long is long enough?
How long does it take to implement the polices needed to develop a country and its people?
What if a president is doing very well.. the country is relatively stable, and change could undermine.. or halt much of that good work?
What if he (or she) just needs... one more day!.... and life for the majority will be undeniably and demonstrably improved?
What if the majority of the people want him.. or her... to remain?

Some may argue in some cases, that there is 'no one better equipped' to do the job

My current opinion is that for developing countries across Africa.. it is possible that two terms is not enough time.
It took me almost 2 weeks to make an important phone call!

Poor example I know... and I'm surely not a president
However, It's said that a week is a long time in politics in that case....maybe with the right focus intention and policies.. 10yrs should suffice.. no?

Debates over third-termism within the African Union

President of Burundi - Pierre Nkurunziza

Good morning x

Thursday 10 September 2015

Xoli M - Walk In My Way

A nice mellow track

Do you remember a while back I commented on what appeared to be the sacking of ['African'] vice presidents season? [click]

You may have missed it.. after was subtle.
I called the post.. "Is this the season for sacking vice presidents?" [click]
Like I said.. subtle ;)

Anyway..turns out that President Ernest Bai Koroma had the power to sack his V.P after all..
Well... we all knew he had the power but were his actions within his constitutional rights?
According to the court... yes

Who knew [click]


Keep calm and listen to some house I say..

..walk in my way...

What... where ... how?.. aka pronounce that!

Does this place really exist?!

2 fine tracks for Thursday Sexy Rosey Flavour ft P-Square & Confidential - D'Banj ft. Driis + Shadow Boxxer

Fun vid. Catchy tune
..'waist 34 hips 44.. '

I was drawn to this initially because of Idris Elba
Representing Sierra Leone ( & Hackney..heehee) nicely .. krio boy is hot in this
Cool track though... it's a grower

Yes D'banj.. we know...

Good morning x

Wednesday 9 September 2015

A 'Knighthood' feature ft the NelisFitzgerald

Ti working hard...

Henny Knightz Soundcloud

Mini documentary 2014

Phyno - Une

Nice flow
can't find a translation..

Bracket ft. Phyno - Bartender

I do like Bracket...

Featuring my favourite light skinned boy.
I say that because I had a conversation recently about the 'pains' sometimes inflicted on darker skinned children, experiencing life as a black child amidst those who believed [believe] in the biased racial theory which justified the inhumane transatlantic slave trade for many years. In too many African and Caribbean homes lighter skinned children are favoured, praised, and in some cases given opportunities the darker children simply would [will] not receive. Most commonly, girls given titles of beautiful based on the lightness of thier skin, and the straightness of their hair. They would be the most sought after.. resembling closest ( I guess) .. to an alleged white ideal.
The talk went deep.
I thought of my own mother who being darker than her sister, appears to have experienced life as the 'black Cinderella' in comparison. (I'm possibly exaggerating but you get my drift). When I think about the conversations I've had with her over the past few months I wonder of the impact her early experiences had. I suspect it dented her confidence, and dulled her spirit for many many years.

Pretty sure it must have had an impact on what she thought she was entitled to, both growing up and as an adult.

Thankfully, times have changed quite a bit, but change is slow and not enough. These ideas are still prevalent in our 'communities'. You don't have to dig too deep to find them.

I pray for an end to 'African mental slavery', and freedom for the colonized mind. I really do. [click]
Get it together men... you play a big part in its continuation.

Good morning x
...don't visit the 'bartender' til later..... :)
luv ya

Monday 7 September 2015

Bracket - Iyeri


Hey.. if you don't mean well, and your interests are purely self serving.....

- live and let live.. don't starve others of oxygen when you are already breathing well -

Bracket ft. Flavour - Egbe Belu

Egbe Belu is an Igbo proverb, bascially meaning and let live
Egbu Belu - 'let the kite perch.. let the eagle perch'...

Wetin na yu yon pah hכg mכni we yu dadi nכto bucha...?
What's your interest in hog money when your father's not a butcher?
Basically meaning ..mind your own business. Or... live and let live depending on context.
- Krio saying -

Have a nice evening
Good night to you x

Sunday 6 September 2015

Weekend Wow Factor - Taught to be...

Of all the things we are taught in school[s]... how to make money is rarely one of them.
We are taught, .. how to serve, rarely how to be served.. we are taught how to follow, rarely how to lead.
We are taught how to spend .. rarely how to save..

State education will always ( in the main) be the best way to ensure a steady supply of faithful servants of the state
If the state takes care of its subjects, then great..
If not.....


The Labour leadership contest hasn't quite grabbed my attention to be honest, but due to the furore around 'left wing' Jeremy Corbyn, and the fear that some labour supporters have of a swing so far left that the party will be unelectable for decades to come..... I thought i'd check him out.

Now, I would be surprised if anyone watching this interview will disagree with much of what he says.. in fact i suspect many will nod in agreement at his 'humanitarian rhetoric..

Politics. is like music.... you can often tell what's going on in the minds of the people if you listen to thier music...
Equally, you can tell what's going on in the minds of the people based on who they vote for.. and who is in power.

I have a new saying. Don't blame the 'government'... blame the people. [If blame be your thing]

We currently have a Conservative government due to an increase in right wing attitudes..
God has a sense of humour. A refugee crisis ( high on the political agenda) and right wing attitudes tend not to be favourable bedfellows.

So Corbyn?...I like him. I didn't initially. But a strong labour voice is needed which provides a credible contrast to the Conservative agenda.
Labour should not mimic the Tories.. we did it once and it worked.
But you wont get another Blair ( Pity) .. and times have changed.


Dr Umar and I tend to part ways at some point during his talks..
But that's okay....
A very knowledgeable man, passionate, intelligent, interesting ( funny at times ) and this interview ... quite compelling..


Sierra Leone faced a set back last week after a woman was confirmed with having died of Ebola. Hopefully the country will be able to celebrate in full soon enough.. with the 42 day no new cases countdown (zero) having begun again on the 29th August. [click]


Talented man .. E.L
Nice... eyebrows :)

Easy Chale...

Mavins - Looku Looku

It took me awhile to get into this for some reason.. now I totally love it!
My fav crew at the mo..
Good morning..have a great day!

Tuesday 1 September 2015

Did somebody say get back to work!?.. oh.. and Happy Birthday Ti!

It's Ti's birthday, my 'given birth' day, and my 1st day back at work.
How have you all been?

I hardly slept a wink, am raring to go, and raring to get back home to Freetown tbh lol!
So... what's going on in London, what have I missed?
I have a birthday cake to bake later so better get going. things to do, lots to organise

Word of the day?.. focus..

Song of the day?...Autumn leaves. I've played this alot over the past few weeks.. plus a reporter on the news just said it's the 1st day of autumn
Ahhhhh...September.. my birthday month.

Good morning all.. x Hello and welcome September


Birthday Boy