Arts, Culture & Media

Freshlyground Blends Musical Styles with Political Messages

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Freshlyground lead singer Zolani Mahola. (Photo: Freshlyground)

South Africa-based Freshlyground blends together a variety of musical influences. Their music and lyrics sometimes make a strong political statement, and other times merge into exciting dance tracks. Freshlyground's new album "Take Me to the Dance" has both types of songs.

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The band stopped by The World's studios during their recent tour in the northeast of the United States. The seven band members hail from South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique.

"We're musical-political as opposed to political-musical," Bass player Josh Hawks said. "But, we are affected by what goes on around us."

The band wrote the song "Chicken to Change," about Zimbabwe's president Robert Mugabe. Freshlyground's lead singer Zolani Mahola said the band's visits to neighboring Zimbabwe inspired that song.

"It's been very obvious to see the degradation and how bad the situation is, and how fearful people had become, more and more, under the government of Mugabe. And so, we wrote the song," Mahola said.

In the video below, by The World's Sonia Narang, watch interviews with Freshlyground's Zolani Mahola and Kyla-Rose Smith along with their performance in Boston.

In the video below, Freshlyground sings "The Message" during a soundcheck before their live performance.

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