Afro Turn Up

Get up with the Afro Turn-Up

Andrew McLellan, 28th April 2020
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If you ever wondered what it would be like to go clubbing in Lagos or kick back at a braai (BBQ) in Cape Town, then Kix will give you a good idea with the Afro Turn-Up.

From PBS Melbourne, and available through the Community Radio Network, each week Christine Mwaturura, aka. Kix features the best in contemporary African music from the early 90s to present day with special guest interviews.

We asked Kix about the history of the show and to pick some of her favourite clips.

You told listeners in your first program on the Community Radio Network, but to have it in writing, what's the difference between Afrobeat and Afrobeats?

Afrobeat is a music genre which originated in West Africa in the '60s and was popularized by the legendary Nigerian musician, Fela Kuti. 

While there is no standard definition for the term Afrobeats, many people use it as an umbrella term to refer to popular, contemporary African music predominantly from the West-African countries of Nigeria and Ghana. Examples of well-known Afrobeats artists include: Davido, Wizkid and Yemi Alade. 

Common to both is the fusion of traditional African rhythms/elements with non-African styles, for example: jazz, funk, hip-hop and dancehall.

How did Afro Turn-Up start? Have you done much radio before? 

My journey into radio actually started with podcasting. In 2015, my sister and I decided to start a podcast and it was through that experience that I began to learn about the creative and technical aspects of producing audio content, as well as how to use my voice properly (and get used to hearing it in the playback!). 

After winding down the podcast, it seemed like a natural step to explore radio, so I signed up for the PBS announcer course in 2017. During my first lesson at the station, I felt a strong sense of belonging which prompted me to submit a show proposal and demo shortly after the course. After doing some fills in the graveyard shift, later in the year, I got offered a slot for my own show. I haven't looked back since. 

How did you first get into the music you bring listeners each week?

I was raised in Zimbabwe and grew up listening to quite a diverse mix of music. As a young girl, I especially gravitated towards Kwaito and Afro-house from South Africa. It was around early 2000s that Afrobeats started making it's way down to Southern Africa, with acts like P-Square and 2Face at the helm of spreading its reach. I instantly took to the music and became more curious about music from other parts of the continent. 

Over the years, exposure to music from other African countries became easier with better internet access and speed, as well as the emergence of social media platforms. 

While all live music is impacted by COVID-19 at the moment, have you seen the musicians and scenes you spin respond in any particular way?

Social media platforms have been quite useful tools for musicians to stay connected with fans, provide much needed entertainment, and also earn some money in these tough conditions.

I have seen couch concerts, virtual festivals, and live-stream battles. I applaud the ingenuity of these temporary solutions.

What new styles and genres are you really excited about at the moment? Maybe link us some of your favorite tracks?
Amapiano, a sub-genre of Afro-house, is really having a moment! I love it because it combines Afro-house with Kwaito bass-lines and usually jazzy piano keys. Check out:
Tender Love by Sha Sha (featuring DJ Maphorisa & Kabza De Small)
Love You Tonight by MFR Souls (featuring Sha Sha, DJ Maphoris & Kabza De Small)
International by Vigro Deep
Emcimbini by Kabza & DJ Maphorisa (featuring Aymos, Samthing Soweto, Mas Musiq & Myztro)
Amapiano live balcony mix 5 by Major League DJz 

For CRN subscribers:

  • Program runs 55'50 minutes
  • Afro Turn-Up distributes Fridays at 22:00 AEST/AEDT; repeats on satellite Sundays at 16:00 AEST/AEDT
  • Available for on-demand broadcast by stations via DDN capture and download
  • Presented for a national audience
  • For more information contact CRN staff on 02 9310 2999 or email crn@cbaa.org.au

Not a CRN subscriber, but want to find out more about getting content like this for your station? Read more here.

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