Kenya's Tuko Pamoja to perform at the Africa Safari Festival,Netherlands

Uganda's Daniel Okiror, Kenya's Tuko Pamoja and Zimbabwe's Vimbai Zimuto will perform at the inaugural edition of Africa Safari Festival at the ACU in Utrecht, the Netherlands, on 25 January 2019.

The festival, which is organised by Akogo Africa – an NGO, label, recording studio and artist management company founded by Okiror – is envisaged to take place annually and create international performance opportunities for African musicians, especially in East Africa.

“This idea has been around for years," Okiror told Music In Africa. "This was our goal when we established our record label in 2011. I am excited to launch the festival because it will be a place for people to experience genuine African culture that comes with music. The event will also serve as a platform for them to explore tourism opportunities in Africa.”

Okiror says the festival has the potential to fill a gap in the market, especially since concets and festivals in the Netherlands seldom book traditional or Afro-fusion musicians from East Africa.

“There are very few promoters, if any, who promote East African music on the international stage. Many established promoters are more familiar with music from the western, southern and central parts of Africa,” he said.

Okiror also challenged industry players back home to invest in exporting authentic East African music in order to increase musicians' productivity and earning power.

“Most musicians that explore traditional and Afro-fusion music are rarely booked throughout the year by local promoters. This is because these genres are considered backward and non-commercial. However, people around the world enjoy our excellent artistic and cultural output, so getting such artists opportunities abroad will ensure they become frontrunners in the sector,” Okiror said.

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