AfroPop

S13 E1305 | FULL EPISODE

Bakosó: Afrobeats of Cuba

What does “Está Rico” by Marc Anthony, Will Smith & Bad Bunny have in common with “Made For Now” by Janet Jackson x Daddy Yankee? They both high-jacked AfroBeats and did not give the genre’s origin props. Bakosó is a film that does the opposite, following DJ Jigüe to his hometown of Santiago de Cuba to find inspiration from the new sounds.

AIRED: March 22, 2021 | 0:55:31
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TRANSCRIPT

- [Narrator] African rhythms

have always been a part of Caribbean music.

And a new sound called the Bakoso

is pulsing through the streets of Cuba.

(speaks in foreign language)

"Bakoso: AfroBeats of Cuba"

follows music producer DJ Jigue as he explores it's origins

in the vivacious barrios of Santiago,

to elevate his Afro futuristic musical style.

(upbeat music)

Director, Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi mixes lush landscapes

with a score by the pioneers of Bakoso,

for a deeper look into the fusion

of African cultures in the Caribbean.

Our connection to Africa is not a thing of the past,

it's the present and the future.

(upbeat music)

On this episode, "Bakoso, Afrobeats of Cuba."

Afropop the ultimate cultural exchange

celebrates it's 13th season

with a collection of trailblazers, pioneers

and everyday black excellence.

A transgender activist,

a family searching for answers,

the women who give New Orleans it's vibrance,

a revolutionary visual artist,

racism in the Dominican Republic,

a visionary mayor of Chicago

and a sound sweeping the streets of Cuba,

Afropop brings you across the world to experience blackness.

(upbeat music)

Funding for "Afropop, The Ultimate Cultural Exchange"

is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting

and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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♪ This is the music from Africa ♪

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♪ Africa

♪ Africa, Africa, Africa, Africa, Africa ♪

♪ Africa

♪ Africa, Africa, Africa

♪ Africa, Africa, Africa, yeah, yeah, yeah ♪

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- [Boy] Daddy.

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- Peace, my name is Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi,

I'm the director producer of, "Bakoso: AfroBeats of Cuba."

(upbeat music)

"Bakoso: AfroBeats of Cuba"

is about a new genre of music

taking place in Santiago de Cuba.

And it's about our connection to Africa,

that is not something that ended

with the transatlantic slave trade

but our connection to Africa is present.

Today, in Bakoso, is a great example of that.

(upbeat music)

What inspired me to make this film

is to uplift and tell the stories of Afro Latinos.

And I remember the moment I was talking to DJ Jigue

on the roof of his house in Havana,

and I met him through my first film

called, "Inventos: Hip Hop Cubano."

And I showed him my second film

was about HipLife music in Ghana,

it was called, "HomeGrown."

And when he saw that film, he said,

"There's a similar sound emerging from Santiago de Cuba.

"And we should go back there and, and see what's happening,

"see this genre being born."

And so that's exactly what we did

and that's what happens in the film.

(sings in foreign language)

So I think the most important lesson in making this film

is the importance of non extractive storytelling.

I think a lot of times, documentary filmmakers

and other media makers will go into a community

and extract stories.

They even call it, "Mining for stories."

And what's really important right now is

for us to be able to tell our own stories,

of our own communities, of the people that we roll with.

So, with DJ Jigue, I've been rocking with him for 20 years,

and I think it comes through in the film,

like when we visit abuela's house during the ceremony.

And so the way that films are made needs to change.

I also believe that documentary filmmaking

isn't a genre where you have to just

leave the theater in tears,

thinking that the world is a horrible place,

but rather be inspired about justice,

about true stories, about being yourself.

And that's what Bakoso does,

so I'm happy to bring it to you.

♪ Bakoso

♪ Bakoso

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♪ Bakoso

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♪ Bakoso

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♪ Bakoso

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♪ Bakoso

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- Something I want viewers to take away from this film

is see the connection to Africa,

to see where the genre comes from,

to see Afrobeats being born, happening in Cuba.

Afrobeats is something that has come into

our popular sound of the day,

whether it's Janet Jackson, Mark Anthony

and Will Smith, Ozuna,

these are all people that are using the sound

but they don't necessarily give props to it's origin.

And when you hear and see Bakoso,

you see that connection to Africa,

and they'll tell you, "This is from Nigeria,

"this is from Angola,

"this is what we're using with our own local sound."

And that's how Bakoso was born.

(upbeat music)

- [Narrator] Funding for

"Afropop, The Ultimate Cultural Exchange"

is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting

and the National Endowment for the Arts.

(gentle music)

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