Posts Tagged ‘cuba’

Drums of Revolution: new beat tape celebrating Cuba


Check out the new beat tape from Agent of Change, released today to mark the 60th anniversary of the start of the Cuban Revolution. The 18 hip-hop instrumentals (with a couple of feature verses from Fidel Castro and Nelson Mandela!) celebrate Cuban culture, drawing influence and samples from Cuba’s diverse musical heritage.

Why Cuba? Here’s an article detailing some of the things that make Cuba worthy of support.

New hip-hop: Madiba’s Message (celebrating Cuban-Southern African solidarity)

Today marks 25 years since the army of apartheid South Africa was forced to start withdrawing from Angola after 13 years’ intervention in that country’s civil war, having been defeated in battle by a joint Angolan-Cuban force. Over the course of 1975-88, nearly 400,000 Cubans volunteered in Angola, mostly as soldiers but also as doctors, nurses, teachers and advisers. This is one of the greatest historical examples of revolutionary internationalism. When Nelson Mandela visited Cuba a year after his release from prison, he made an emotional speech in Havana in recognition of Cuba’s contribution to the liberation of southern Africa. That speech is sampled in this track.

“This is revolutionary Cuba; internationalist Cuba; the country that has done so much for the peoples of Africa. The Cuban people hold a special place in the hearts of the people of Africa. The Cuban internationalists have made a contribution to African independence, freedom and justice unparalleled for its principled and selfless character. From its earliest days the Cuban Revolution has itself been a source of inspiration to all freedom-loving people. We admire the sacrifices of the Cuban people in maintaining their independence and sovereignty in the face of a vicious imperialist-orchestrated campaign to destroy the impressive gains made in the Cuban Revolution.

We too want to control our own destiny… Long live the Cuban revolution.”

Read the full speech

Fidel was overcome with emotion on hearing Madiba’s speech. In his own speech, he said:

“It would not be right for us to emphasise Cuba’s modest contribution to the cause of the South African people, but on hearing Mandela’s speech, compañeros, I believe that he paid the greatest and most profound tribute that has ever been paid to our internationalist fighters. I believe that his words will remain, as if they were written in gold letters, as a homage to our combatants. He was generous, very generous; he recalled the epic feat our people performed in Africa, where all the spirit of this revolution was manifested, all its heroism and steadfastness…

“We knew – how could we not know! – that those events [in Angola] would have a profound effect on the life of South Africa itself, and this was one of the reasons, one of the motives, one of the great incentives that pushed us on. Because we knew that once the problem in Angola was resolved, the forces that were fighting against apartheid would also benefit from our struggles.

“But have we said it this way before? No, never, because we believe that above and beyond the enormous support from abroad … the decisive and determining factor behind the ANC’s successes was the heroism, the spirit of sacrifice and struggle of the South African people led by the ANC.

“This man, in these times of cowardice and so many things, has come to tell us what he told us this afternoon. It is something that can never be forgotten and it reveals the human, moral and revolutionary dimension of Nelson Mandela.”

Please enjoy and share the track! Long live Cuba and long live free Africa! The legacy of Nelson Mandela lives forever!

Read more about Cuba’s intervention in Angola
Fidel and Madiba

Viva Cuba! Lowkey ft Shadia Mansour – Too Much

The latest leak from Lowkey’s long-anticipated album, Soundtrack to the Struggle, has a clear message about the dangers of our society’s obsession with money, asking “Do you possess money or by money are you possessed?”

In contrast to the crass materialism of modern capitalist society, the video shows vibrant images of life in Cuba, a society where money is less important than physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual well-being. The beautiful video ends with an important message from independent film-maker Pablo Navarrete about Cuba and the US blockade against it:

The US government’s blockade against Cuba was first imposed in October 1960.

It was introduced after the revolutionary government of Fidel Castro (which came to power in January 1959 after overthrowing the brutal US-backed dictator Fulencio Batista) nationalised property belonging to US citizens and corporations.

Since 1962 the blockade has been tightened further and today represents the longest blockade in history.

The cost to the Cuban economy has been catastrophic, estimated at more than 750 billion US dollars, in current prices.

The UN General Assembly has voted every year for 19 years on a resolution condemning the blockade. Every year the condemnation is virtually unanimous.

In the most recent vote in October 2010, 187 countries voted for ending the blockade. Only the US and Israel voted to continue with it.

The criminal US blockade of Cuba has for over 50 years tried to suffocate the island; to teach its people and revolution a brutal lesson for standing up to US imperialism and daring to be free.

With heroic sacrifices, Cuba continues to not only resist but to shine a light on the path to a fairer, more humane world.

Cuba resists; Cuba lives; Viva Cuba!

Another deep and important track from Lowkey. Very much looking forward to the album!

Follow Lowkey on Twitter.
Follow Pablo Navarrete on Twitter.

Lowkey – My Soul – “I’d rather die than smile with my oppressor”

Another big track and video from Lowkey. Video shot on location in Cuba by the always-excellent Global Faction.

They can’t use my music to advertise for Coca-Cola
They can’t use my music to advertise for Motorola
They can’t use my music to advertise for anything
I guess that’s reason the industry won’t let me in
Refuse to be a product or a brand; I’m a human
Refuse to contribute to the gangster illusion

You might take my life
But you can’t take my soul
You can’t take my soul
You might take my freedom
But you can’t take my soul
You can’t take my soul

Tell ’em!

Follow Lowkey on Twitter.
Follow Global Faction on Twitter

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