Blitz the Ambassador Chronicles Hip-Hop’s ‘Mobile Diaspora’ in Afropolitan Dreams


It’s telling that Samuel Bazawule-aka Blitz the Ambassador-was introduced to hip-hop as a child in Ghana via the music of Public Enemy.

While “Niggas in Paris” like Kanye West and Jay Z are most often recalled in fantasies and nightmares of hip-hop’s global expansion, rappers have been in the vanguard of a black cosmopolitan identity for almost 40 years. That’s part of the joke that opens Bazawule’s new release, Afropolitan Dreams, recalling his arrival in the United States and the incredulous response of an immigration officer to his stated profession: “rapper.”

And the title of Bazawule’s new recording is drawn from a term coined by writer Taiye Selasi in her 2005 essay, “Bye-Bye Barbar,” where she thinks aloud about a generation of African immigrants who weren’t simply cosmopolitan—citizens of the world—but Afropolitan, or “Africans of the world.” Read More at THEROOT

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