Mukambunguje

Mwima i Nyanza, Amajyepfo

[Mukambuguje Vereriya (MV) n’umukobwa we Nyiranziza Marie-Claire (NMC)]

Jye: Mukecuru ndabona ugifite agatege, ese waba waravutse ryari ?
MV: Navutse mu 1928.
Jye: Wavutse mu mwaka umwe n’umwamikazi Rozariya Gicanda! Watuye aha i Mwima kuva kera se?
MV: Dore navukiye hariya hari inzu ya Rudahigwa ku rweserero. Ni ho hari iwacu neza neza. Yaje kuhagura na data twimukira i Munyinya.
Jye: Ubwo umuntu yavuga ko wamenye ubwenge ufite imyaka ingahe?
MV: Ruzagayura ujya uyumva?
Jye: Yee
MV: Yateye mfite imyaka 13.
Jye: Ese ubundi yateye ite? Yaje rimwe cyangwa abantu bagiye basonza gahoro gahoro?
MV: Wa mwana we ntugasetse! Inzara iragapfa. Ruzagayura yateye imvura igwa! Abantu batera imigozi nkaho yashoye ikarambura imizi. Yari igikenya!
Jye: Bavugaga ko ari iki se buriya?
MV: Bavugaga ko ari umuvumo wabaga utewe n’abahoryo. Abo ni abami b’imyaka. Iyo hagiraga ikibarakaza baravumaga icyo bashatse kigapfa, bavumura imyaka ikongera ikera. Icyo gihe hari uwitwaga Batsinda wari utuye za Nyamiyaga iyo. Ubwo Rudahigwa yaramutumiraga yaje aherekejwe n’abiru be ingoma zivuga. Nuko arayivumura imyaka irongera irera. Icyo gihe heze ibishyimbo wa muntu we! Ibijumba birera, amasaka arera, ibintu byose !
Jye: Yayivumuye ate?
MV: Ndabizi se? Wowe ibyo ukora nzi uko ubikora?

Ubwo umukobwa we Nyiranziza Marie-Claire (NMC) aba adusanze aho nawe aricara.

MV: Ibindi bibaze uyu mwana ni uw’i bwami.
Jye: Ni byo se? Muri ab’i bwami mu buhe buryo?
MV: Dukomoka mu muryango w’abagaragu b’i bwami.
NMC: Sogokuruza yari umugaragu wa Rwabugiri na Musinga. Sogokuru aba umugaragu wa Musinga. Yavurugaga amata agaha abana b’u mwami. Ba Kigeli, Rudahigwa…
Jye: Yitwaga nde?
MV: Sogokuru yitwaga Rwandinzi. Sogokuruza we yari Buregeya.
Jye: Ubwo ni Rwandinzi rwa Buregeya.
MV & NMC: yee
Jye: Ese kuki abagore batajya bivuga nka kuriya iyo umuntu ababajije?
NMC: Nta mugore wivuga. Hivuga umugabo.
Jye: Kubera iki se kandi muba mukomoka ku muntu umwe?
NMC: Nyine umugore nta gaciro yagiraga nkak’umugabo. Ubwo yagombaga kwicisha bugufi agaha umugabo icyubahiro kimukwiye. Urugero ni nk’ukuntu umugabo yanyweshaga umuheha yajya kuguha, akaguha nk’umwana mu ruho.
Jye: Uruho ni uruki se kandi?
NMC: Mbese ufata igicuma ugasaturamo kabiri. Kiriya gisate bashyiramo amazi iyo umuntu ari gukama ni cyo uruho.
Jye: Ese ibi bintu ubizi ute?
NMC: Nabitojwe na sogokuru na mama…
Jye: Wavutse ryari?
NMC: Mu 1969.
MV: Reka! Ni 1968.
NMC: Yego ariko ndavuga umwaka wanditse mu ndangamuntu.
Jye: Mukecuru wowe wabyirukiye aha i Mwima, wambwira uko hasaga?
MV: Hari heza cyane. Ku minsi mikuru byari byiza kurushaho. Ugasanza abashumba bari kuvugira inyambo bazitaka. Inyambo nziza zifite amahembe maremare manini. Ariko hakaba n’izindi nka zitaserukaga bitaga inkotanyi. Nazo zari nziza zikaguma mu biraro iyo. Ni zo zakamirwaga umwami.
Jye: Mwari mutunze inka iwanyu?
MV: Yee. Zigeze kuri eshanu.
Jye: Ubwo ndumva nawe uzi kuvuruga.
MV: Yampaye inka Yesu. Yazane nkwereke.
Jye: Mbwira uko bavuruga rero.
MV: Uyu muhungu arankoresha igitangaza!
Jye: Hahaha ni ibihe bikoresho uba ufite?
MV: Umutozo.
Jye: Uteye ute?
MV: Ni igiti cyera ku gasozi cyitwa umutozo kigororotse neza.
Jye: Hanyuma? Uhera he?
NMC: Urabanza ugakama, warangiza ukabuganiza mu cyansi.
Jye: Kubuganiza ni iki?
NMC: Ntibavuga gusuka amata. Bavuga kubuganiza. Ubwo wamara kubuganiza ugatereka ahantu akageza igihe akaba umubanji.
MV: Nkubu inka yakamwe uyu munsi. Burazakwira amata yabaye umubanji. Nyuma y’iminsi ine araba yabaye ikivuguto.
Jye: Icyo kivuguto nicyo muvuruga.
NMC: Yee ukoresha wa mutozo uvuruga kugira ngo anoge havemo amaziri. Ni bya bintu byihirika mu mata bikamera nk’ibibumbe. Ubwo warangiza ukabuganiza mu gisabo uvana mu cyansi kugira ngo uvanemo ya mavuta.
Jye: Ayo mavuta ajya hejuru cyangwa munsi?
NMC: Arareremba hejuru.
Jye: Uyabona ute se kandi ari mu gisabo?
MV: Urabogeka utya ukareba.
Jye: Bigafata igihe kingana iki?
MV: Nko mw’isaha biba byarangiye.
Jye: Hanyuma ugasuka… nako ukabuganiza mu ki?
MV: Kera washyiraga mu gicuba, mu kadagoka ariko ubu ni ugusuka mu ma dobo hahaha.
Jye: Ubwo se amata ntiyajyanaga n’ayo mavuta aho uyabuganirije?
NMC: Yego ariko nyine ukazana indosho ukavanamo ayo mavuta kuko yabaga ari kureta hejuru.
Jye: Indosho ni nk’ikimamiyo?
NMC: Yee twabigereranya. Hanyuma ugasobanura. Ubwo gusobanura ni ugutandukanya amata n’amavuta. Wasyira ku ruhande bakayita amacunda. Kandi kera cyaraziraga nta mugabo wanywaga amacunda. Yari…

Bavugira hamwe

MV & NMC : Amacunda ni ay’abana n’abagore.
Jye: Nyine umugabo yanywaga amata meza. Abana n’abagore banywaga ayo macunda ari uko bayakunze se?
NMC : Ibyo se ko byari umuco. Uretse nayo mata, yaba inshyushyu cyangwa ikivuguto yose twarayanywaga.
MV: Cyari ikizira ku mugabo.
Jye: Ubwo rero mumaze gusobanura amata… ya mavuta rero…?
MV: Ubwo ugafata indosho ukagenda ukuraho hejuru ugashyira mu ndeso cyangwa urwabya. Urwabya ni bya bindi abatwa babumbaga. Rumeze nk’umufuniko w’inkono.
MV: Ese iwanyu ntimuteka mu nkono za Kinyarwanda ?
Jye: Reka da! Maze duteka kuri gaz.
MV: ku… ku biganza?
Jye: Hahaha oya. Gaz. Amashanyarazi n’ibyo bindi….
NMC: Uramubwira ibyo bya kera se… umva rero. Ubwo ukarunga ayo mavuta wateka imboga ugashyiramo. Imboga ubwo simvuga ibyatsi. Ni inyama. Simvuga iby’uhu bapima ku biro cyangwa twa dushito bashyiraho inyama zingana n’udushyimbo. Kera bashyiraga mu gitebo. Ubwo mukotsa cyangwa mugatogosa mu kibindi umunsi wose.
Jye: Ko numva ngo abanyarwanda ba kera bataryaga inyama se?
NMC: Eeeeeeh!!!
MV: Uwabikubwiye yarakubeshye! Keretse utazirya burundi ku giti cye cyangwa udafite ayo kuzigura.
NMC: Ubwo mugashyiza ku mashyiga zashya bagakata ingeri.
Jye: Ingeri yangana ite?
NMC: Ni nk’iri tafari. Bagakatisha urutamyi. Bakagushyirira nka bibiri ku mbehe n’umufa ukarisha umutsima w’amasaka. Ubwo wabaga wabanje kurya izokeje. Hmm hmm!
Jye: Urabivuga nkaho udaheruka akaboga.
NMC: Byihorere… iby’ubu se…
MV: Ubu se… iptu! Ubu bararya inyanya… Veronica ni we wavugaga ngo “Barya inyanya bakanyanyagiza amagambo”
Jye: Hahaha
MV: Uwaryaga inyanya se yanywaga amata?
NMC: cyangwa ibihumyo!
MV: Nizo nyama. Ntawaguhaga amata. Ngo ni ukuzanduza.
Jye: Kwanduza inyama cyangwa amata?
MV: Kwanduza inka.
Jye: Ese ibyo bisobanura iki?
MV: Ni ukuyanduza nyine igakamwa amata mabi.
NMC: Akazamo amaziri.
Jye: Ubwo uwakamaga yari abizi ko atagombaga kuba yariye ibyo bintu.
NMC & MV: Babaga bamuzi.
Jye: Ese ku munsi w’umuganura iyo basubiyemo ibyo bya kera ubona babyigana neza?
NMC : Cyane rwose. Barabyubahiriza. Bakazana amarwa, inkangaza, inturire, umutsama, umuhama, intimbure…
Jye: Izo zose ni inzoga?
NMC : Yee. Ubwo iyo ngiye mu rukari mbigisha ibyo nzi bakirira.
Jye: Ntibaguhemba se?
NMC: Bampemba iki se? Ngiye no kuzajya mbihorera rwose.
Jye: Uzabihorere. Abazajya baza uzajye ubishyuza.
NMC: Mba nababwiye amagambo meza. Nabahaye ubwenge bwanjye. Bakarira ku magambo nababwiye. Bakirira imari. Jye bakanyambura. Ngo njye kwa rwiyemezamirimo. Yaranyambuye. Najyane!
MV: Kagame niwe wavuze ati “abayobozi aho kugira ngo barengere abaturage, barikunda.”
NMC: Abayobozi baba bashaka kugira icyo bavana mu baturage ariko wajya kubabwira ngo bagukemurire ikibazo…
MV: Iptu!
NMC: Nuko ngo ntange amafaranga y’imisanzu, ay’iki… ndayatanga se nyatangira iki?
Jye: Ahubwo se uba wayakuye he?
MV: Uyakuye he se nyine?
NMC: Nyakuye he? Tekereza ko uyu mukecuru bamushyize mu cyiciro cya 3 cy’ubudehe. Ubwo se urabona ashoboye guhinga? Ubwo bamushyize muri icyo kigero ngo afite abakire bene wabo.
Jye: Abo bakire se ntibari mu nzego zabo?
NMC: Haza gahunda ya Girinka. Ntayirimo. VUP ntayo akirimo kandi abaturage ba Mwima na Rwesero bemeje ko akwiye kubamo ariko abayobozi baraza barongorerana ngo afite abakire bene wabo bamukuramo.
MV: Abo bakire se ni abahe?
Jye: Ni nde winjiza amafaranga muri uru rugo?
NMC: Ni nde se? Usibye gutungwa na nyagasani we nyine.
MV: Mwana wanjye. Sinakubeshya. Ni ukuri kw’Imana ntunzwe n’abamfasha. Hari umpa agahumbi cyangwa magana atanu nkagura udushyimbo…
NMC: Cyangwa se hakaba uza kwivuza kuko avura imvune.
Jye: Urunga se?
MV: Yee. Nkavura amahumane, nkunga nkabyaza n’ababyeyi, cyangwa inda bazinze nkazizingura.
Jye: Nyibwirira kuri ibyo by’ubuvuzi bwa gakondo.
NMC: Yee. Kunga… bunga mu gicucu. Ukanakoresha umuti uba wasekuye witwa Ngingo-Ijana. Hari myinsi.
Jye: Ese ibyo wabimenye ute?
MV: Ibyo byose ni ibyo twagiye twigisshwa n’ababyeyi na ba nyogokuru bacu.
NMC: Dore mbese nkubu uvunitse akaboko. Ushyira mu ku zuba uku none nkazana icyuma nkaca indasago ku gicucu hanyuma nkakoresha wa muti kuri ya mvune nkanda ku mubiri wawe.
Jye: Ese ko natsikiye ntimwanvura?
MV: Cyane. Genda unsoromere umuti Nyiranziza we.
NMC: Mukecuru yagukora ubu ukagenda uri muzima rwose.
Jye: Ngaho dore. Ngaka akaguru.

Entre 2 album review: En Root

Track 11: En Root (“In Root/En Route”)

The album’s message of a united humanity – which 1Key expresses in his previous song Universoul – nicely leads us into Entre 2’s reggae song: En Root (“In Root”). Over bouncy rhythms, the album’s entre deux (“between two”) motif persists until the end. As the title of the song suggests, 1Key is “in root”. The poet’s journey completes a full circle when he returns to his search for a connection to his “untraceable” roots. In the hook, 1Key sings in English:

“Take me to the roots of my family tree

Lead me to the truth and set me free

Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies

My shining star…”

1Key reveals that he emerges himself in technology “in order to get close to strangers/Hoping that the world will be better if we just accept to mix.” (Translated from French to English) The artist unsuccessfully tried to find himself through religion, race, ethnicity, nationality, traditions, and profession. In the end, 1Key tells us:

“I decided to embrace the fact that I’m this mass, or rather this mess that absorbs whatever the world throws at it, you know?

Who or what I am is no longer a big deal

I’m here and that’s all that matters…”

Breaking away slightly from his heritage, 1Key tells us that he has reinvented his personality. Rather than “in root”, he is now “en route”; the poet has “put the pieces together” and is on a new universoul journey…

entre-2_one-key_appreciations.png.png

With that, the piece transforms into 1Key’s appreciation song. The artist thanks his Grandfather, his mother, his aunties and his Uncle Faustin, who raised 1Key with his Grandfather. He also thanks his son. 1Key thanks music producers Barick, Junior Kafi, and Joe. He shows appreciation to the artists featured in the album: Dady Cassanova, Samy Kamanzi, Ricky Password, Brian Corpus, Jason Ntaro, Nono (Mhinganzima), and Natacha. He also thanks Tony Mwesigwa and Reniout Dujardin for “the amazing job on the cover”, and the founders of Spoken Word Rwanda (Diana and Betty) and Kwivuga Kampala (Nunu – who is also Rwandan). 1Key gives thanks to living legend Cecile Kayirebwa and her son Eric Soul, as well as Nelson, who invited 1Key to perform in Rwanda’s KigaliUp Festival for the first time. He thanks his colleagues and friends (Dorene, Colin and Josh) and members of Ze Clew: Kaneza, Fiona, Leah, PK, Dan, Gladys and Sam. Ze Clew is a WhatsApp group, with members from Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. 1Key told me: “It’s a friendship group. The idea is for us to assist each other when travelling between these countries”.

Now here is my opportunity to thank you Eric 1Key! As an “outsider” in a country where privacy, distrust and caution have become normalised, I will be forever grateful for meeting you. Our first “interview” lasted for five intense hours! Since then, you have gifted me with many more hours of your time. Those were extremely busy days for you, with full time work, parenthood and preparation for your first live show. But patiently you helped me to translate all eleven tracks on your album. Your direct and open approach to discussion has taught me more than I could have imagined. It’s been a privilege; it’s been a lot of fun! Thank you for trusting me with your words.

Thank you, Merci, Murakoze!

Ceri Whatley

PhD African Studies/Anthropology of Music

University of Birmingham, UK

AHRC-M3C

 

Entre 2 is available on Soundcloud – Entre2 and for sale on digital stores iTunesSpotify, and Amazon. 

Eric 1key is very active on social media where you can find him discussing and debating all kinds of things. For updates and live info, follow Eric1key on Twitter: @eric1key, Facebook: Facebook/eric1key, Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/eric1key or email for bookings at ericonekey@gmail.com

 

_______

Song lyrics and translations

En Root (“In Root”  [Track 11 on Entre 2 album]) 

Prod. Barick (Kigali). Vocals: Yego Studio (Kampala); English, French.

[Intro] [Intro]
Alright! Entre2 has been a beautiful journey Alright! Entre 2 has been a beautiful journey
Yeah. Lots of discovery Yeah. Lots of discovery
So I thought maybe we could take another small trip So I thought maybe we could take another small trip
What do you say? Right? Come with me What do you say? Right? Come with me
[Hook] [Hook]
Take me to the roots of my family tree Take me to the roots of my family tree
Lead me to the truth and set me free Lead me to the truth and set me free
Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies
My shining star My shining star
Take me to the roots of my family tree Take me to the roots of my family tree
Lead me to the truth and set me free Lead me to the truth and set me free
Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies
My shining star My shining star
Woyooo Woyooo
Woyooo Woyooo
[Verse1] [Verse1]
C’est le retour d’âge d’un adulte prématuré It’s the mid-life crisis of a premature adult
Les boots dans l’asphalte, en route, le parcours est inauguré I’ve got my boots on the road, en route, the journey has begun
Les yeux dans les étoiles, je cours après mon ombre My eyes are lost in the stars, I’m running after my shadow
Car retracer mon histoire c’est recoller les décombres Because walking on the path of my history, the whole of it is putting the pieces together
Mes traces ressemblent aux marques des pieds sur la plage My traces look like footprints in the sand
Aussi belles qu’elles paraissent, elles disparaissent avec la vague Although beautiful, they disappear with the waves of the ocean
Racines intraçables, je suis superficiel comme une algue My roots are untraceable, I’m superficial like algae
C’est haut du gratte-ciel que je cherche la base du baobab It’s from the top of a sky scraper that I’m looking for the base of the baobab
Sur cet arbre généalogique, je ne sais sur quelle branche m’accrocher On this genealogy tree, I don’t know which branch to hang on
Donc je me livre à la technologie pour me rapprocher des étrangers So I emerge myself in technology to get closer to strangers
Espérant le monde sera mieux si on acceptait tous de se mélanger Hoping that the world will be better if we just accept to mix
A peine la troisième generation des peuples soumis It’s only the third generation of a subjugated people
L’histoire de ma nation reste fondée sur un mythe The foundation of my nation’s story is a myth
Je crois pas qu’on ait apparu comme en un jour des champignons I don’t believe we appeared one day like mushrooms
C’est pourquoi je cherche mes souches comme le noyau de l’oignon This is why I’m looking for my layers, even though it seems like peeling an onion
 —
On perd la voie de nos ancêtres, l’occident profite We lose the way of our ancestors, and the West benefits from this
On se vend aux enchères depuis que le dollar est notre devise We auctioned ourselves since the dollar became our currency
Main d’oeuvre bon marché, l’Afrique reste en crise Man power is very cheap, so Africa’s economy remains in crisis
Les Etats se multiplient plus on se divise Countries multiply the more we divide
 —
[Hook] [Hook]
Take me to the roots of my family tree Take me to the roots of my family tree
Lead me to the truth and set me free Lead me to the truth and set me free
Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies
My shining star My shining star
Take me to the roots of my family tree Take me to the roots of my family tree
Lead me to the truth and set me free Lead me to the truth and set me free
Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies Save me from the dark, my world is full of lies
My shining star My shining star
[Appreciations] [Appreciations]
It’s funny how It’s funny how
I’ve been looking for myself all this time I’ve been looking for myself all this time
Only to realise that I was here the whole time  Only to realise that I was here the whole time
I tried to find myself through religion I tried to find myself through religion
Race, ethnicity, nationality, traditions, even profession Race, ethnicity, nationality, traditions, even profession
But none of these things worked out for me man But none of these things worked out for me man
So I reinvented my personality So I reinvented my personality
I decided to embrace the fact that I’m this mass, or rather this mess that absorbs whatever the world throws at it, you know? I decided to embrace the fact that I’m this mass, or rather this mess that absorbs whatever the world throws at it, you know?
Who or what I am is no longer a big deal Who or what I am is no longer a big deal
I’m here and that’s all that matters. I’m here and that’s all that matters.
So today I’m here to say thanks So today I’m here to say thanks
Because I don’t believe there is such a thing as self-made Because I don’t believe there is such a thing as self-made
We all need help from one another man We all need help from one another man
So I’m gonna start with my Grandpa – rest in peace beautiful soul. So I’m gonna start with my Grandpa – rest in peace beautiful soul.
Thank you for teaching me by simply being you. Thank you for teaching me by simply being you.
Thank you mom. I know you don’t know much about how I do what I do, but you believe in me. And that means a lot. Thank you Mum. I know you don’t know much about how I do what I do, but you believe in me. And that means a lot.
Thank you Tantine Chantal. You changed my life. Rest In Peace. I wish you were here. Thank you Tantine Chantal. You changed my life. Rest In Peace. I wish you were here.
Thank you Faustin. You’re my childhood everyday hero. Thank you for all the sacrifices. Thank you Faustin. You’re my childhood everyday hero. Thank you for all the sacrifices.
To my son. You’re my balance in this crazy world. I love you. I love you. I love you.  To my son. You’re my balance in this crazy world. I love you. I love you. I love you.
To all my aunties: Didine, Yvette and Mukaza, and even the other Didine. Thank you for being here and thank for making me feel special. Thank you for not judging me.  To all my aunties: Didine, Yvette and Mukaza, and even the other Didine. Thank you for being here and thank for making me feel special. Thank you for not judging me.
Yeah. I have a dream that one day we can sit around a table and laugh all together. Coz you know for sure we have so many comedians in the family.  Yeah. I have a dream that one day we can sit around a table and laugh all together. Coz you know for sure we have so many comedians in the family.
I also wanna thank Barick. You played a huge part in Entre2. I mean literally. I’m proud of you bro. I mean hang in there just a little bit, passion pays bro, it pays. I also wanna thank Barick. You played a huge part in Entre2. I mean literally. I’m proud of you bro. I mean hang in there just a little bit, passion pays bro, it pays.
Junior Kafi, your touch is divine bro. Keep doing what you do. Junior Kafi, your touch is divine bro. Keep doing what you do.
Dady Cassanova, Samy Kamanzi, Ricky Password, Body of Brian, Jason Ntaro, Nono, Natacha. Thank you so much for pouring your hearts on this project. Dady Cassanova, Samy Kamanzi, Ricky Password, Body of Brian, Jason Ntaro, Nono, Natacha. Thank you so much for pouring your hearts on this project.
Tony Mwesigwa, Reniout Dujardin. Thank you guys for the amazing job on the cover. I can never thank you enough. Tony Mwesigwa, Reniout Dujardin. Thank you guys for the amazing job on the cover. I can never thank you enough.
Diana, Betty, Spoken Word Rwanda, Nunu, Kwivuga Kampala, Cecile Kayirebwa, Eric Soul, Nelson, Kigali Up. Thank you for the vote of confidence. Diana, Betty: Spoken Word Rwanda, Nunu: Kwivuga Kampala, Cecile Kayirebwa, Eric Soul, Nelson, Kigali Up. Thank you for the vote of confidence.
Dorene, Colin, Josh, thank you for the support. Keep it real. Dorene, Colin, Josh: Thank you for the support. Keep it real.
Kaneza, Fiona, Leah, PK, Dan, Gladys, Sam, Ze Clew… oh Corey, yeah! Shout out to Ze Clew! Kaneza, Fiona, Leah, PK, Dan, Gladys, Sam, Ze Clew… oh Corey, yeah! Shout out to Ze Clew!
You’re my friends, you’re the friends that I’ve always wanted to have. So stay true. Keep it cool. I love you. Be happy. You’re my friends, you’re the friends that I’ve always wanted to have. So stay true. Keep it cool. I love you. Be happy.
And to everyone who shares my music on social media, I really appreciate. It means a lot to me.  And to everyone who shares my music on social media, I really appreciate. It means a lot to me.
Thanks to all you tweeps, to my friends on Facebook. Thanks to all you tweeps, to my friends on Facebook.
Ah! I don’t know! I don’t know where this music is gonna go, but I’m ready. I can let it take me wherever you wanna take me. Ah! I don’t know! I don’t know where this music is gonna go, but I’m ready. I can let it take me wherever you wanna take me.
Thanks everyone. Yego! Thanks Joe! Big up!   Thanks everyone. Yego! Thanks Joe! Big up!

Entre 2 album review by Ceri Whatley

Ceri Whatley

Ceri Whatley is a PhD candidate in African Studies and Anthropology at the University of Birmingham, UK. Since 2007, she has lived, worked and travelled in 15 African countries and has conducted prior research on isicathamiya music in South Africa (which won her the Fage undergraduate of the year award). Ceri was first introduced to beautiful Rwanda in 2010, when she worked for non-profit organisation One Laptop per Child (OLPC). Marrying together her interest in education and the arts, Ceri spent a second year in Kigali teaching art and music to primary school children.

Ceri’s PhD research explores “musical traffic” – both physical and digital – between Kigali, Rwanda and Kampala, Uganda, with a focus on Afro Beat, R&B, Dancehall, Hip Hop and Spoken Word. She is particularly interested in processes of music making, and in the construction of new Rwandan identities, post-1994 genocide.  

Ceri recently conducted over 12 months of ethnographic research in Rwanda and Uganda. She was based in Rwanda, but traveled with recording artists as they moved between Kigali and Kampala in order to trace and map out complex networks, exchanges and strategies for success.

Ceri became actively involved in Rwanda’s growing music scene. When she wasn’t spending her time at recording studios, she was accompanying recording artists to performances (where she was sometimes asked to MC) and to video shoots, in which she participated. While living in Kigali, Ceri undertook Kinyarwanda language training. With the help of her teacher and her friends, she was able to translate 70 selected songs. She conducted 40 in-depth interviews with Rwandan and Ugandan recording artists, audio and video producers, dancers, studio managers, music promoters, journalists, and radio/TV presenters.

After completing her fieldwork, Ceri spent a month in Belgium as an international visiting scholar. Back in Birmingham, she taught Introduction to African Culture, a first year undergraduate course. She delivered lectures on African literature, art and music, and facilitated core debates about representations of Africa.

While conducting her research, Ceri was extremely impressed by the relentless hard work of the artists she befriended. She was so inspired by Eric 1Key’s poetry that she has resumed her childhood hobby of writing poetry and songs.  While growing up, Ceri was trained in classical piano and the oboe, and in ballet, tap and modern dance.

Ceri is currently writing her thesis in the English countryside (Devon), where she is pleased to be surrounded by green hills and cows, reminding her every day of Rwanda! She looks forward to returning to her “second home” as soon as possible, and plans to continue sharing her work.

Ceri is working with Professor Karin Barber and Dr Katrien Pype, both leading experts in African popular culture. She is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC-M3C) and can be contacted on cnwhatley@gmail.com or: cnw604@bham.ac.uk.