Sampa The Great on Home, Identity and Representation

The Zambian rapper on her new album, "As Above, So Below"

Rapper, singer, songwriter and producer Sampa The Great (aka Sampa Tembo) has been appointed the poster-child of various movements, communities and cultures—without acquiescence—and, as such, she’s no stranger to myopic perceptions, reductive takes and misrepresentations. While she was born in Zambia and raised in Botswana, she’s often described as an Afrobeats (a West African genre) artist. She lived in Melbourne, Australia for several years and …

“The Birth of Hip Hop” Online Auction

On 11 August 1973 an 18-year-old DJ Kool Herc (aka Clive Campbell) performed at his sister Cindy Campbell’s back-to-school party in the rec room of their apartment building located at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the South Bronx. That event—where Herc isolated portions of funk tracks, switching between one record and the other (emphasizing the breaks)—is widely accepted as the birth of hip-hop. While Herc is …

Hip-Hop’s Vital Contributions to HIV Activism

The stories told about HIV and activism surrounding the virus are often incomplete, and focus solely on white gay men. But, as Jake Hall writes for High Snobiety, “the first person to die of AIDS in the US was a Black teenage boy named Robert Rayford.” This forgotten fact encapsulates how dominant narratives have excluded the toll of the virus on Black communities worldwide and …