Showing Archived Posts

Musical Sunshine from Malawi

Posted February 26th, 2008 at 1:33 am (UTC-5)

Nestled between Zambia, Tanzania and Mozambique, Malawi has earned it’s nickname as ‘the warm heart of Africa’. And ‘warm’ is precisely the adjective I would use to describe Malawian music. There is a sunny optimism in much of the Malawian music I’ve heard, and after a grim weekend of cold, rain, and snow, here in […]

Posted in Malawi

Waka and Apala from Nigeria

Posted February 18th, 2008 at 11:51 pm (UTC-5)

In 1965, Leo Sarkisian launched the Voice of America radio program ‘Music Time in Africa’, a show that featured traditional and contemporary music from throughout Africa. Today, 43 years later, Music Time is still on the air, presenting, every Saturday and Sunday, music from throughout the continent, to listeners across Africa. It was also in […]

Posted in Nigeria

Musical memories from Cameroon

Posted February 12th, 2008 at 12:35 am (UTC-5)

Yesterday, the Egyptian national soccer team, the Pharoahs, only needed one goal to beat Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions, and win the Africa Cup of Nations for the sixth time. This morning, the Pharaohs-who were the defending champions- returned to Cairo International airport, where they were met by thousands of overjoyed fans. The Cameroonians, meanwhile, returned to […]

Posted in Cameroon

Kadongo Kamu from Uganda

Posted February 5th, 2008 at 12:47 am (UTC-5)

Kadongo Kamu, or ‘one guitar music’, is a style of narrative song from central Uganda that dates back to the early 1950s. Over the last fifty years the genre has gone through many transformations, but has never strayed from its central purpose: communicating traditional wisdom and morals through anecdotes, stories, and social commentary. The earliest […]

Posted in Uganda



Heather Maxwell produces and hosts the award-winning radio program “Music Time in Africa” and is the African Music Editor for the Voice of America. Heather is an ethnomusicologist with Doctorate and Master’s degrees from Indiana University specializing in African Music. She is also an accomplished jazz and Afrojazz/Afrosoul vocalist and has been working, researching, and performing in Africa and the U.S. since 1987.

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