Rocky Dawuni Drops ‘African Thriller’ Music Video

Rocky Dawuni
GHANA’s Afro reggae star, Rocky Dawuni, has   released his new music video for the hit single ‘African Thriller’ in partnership with  Entertainment Weekly .

The timing of the video launch occurred just a few days after the 40th anniversary of the legendary ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ boxing match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman, and the video draws inspiration from that momentous event.

At a time when news about Africa is dominated by the Ebola crisis, ‘African Thriller’ offers a positive message celebrating African strength, unity and indomitable spirit.

‘African Thriller’ , sung in West African Pidgin English, embodies Rocky Dawuni’s unique Afro-roots sound, a funky blend of soul, pop, Afrobeat and reggae grooves that have made him a household name in his native Ghana and earned him a wide following across the globe.

Jeremy Sole, a DJ, producer and host on the taste-defining Los Angeles radio station KCRW , remixed the single version of ‘African Thriller’ .

Shot in Los Angeles, the highly polished music video, directed by Glen Wilson, and choreographed byKara Mack, offers an explosion of West African inspired dance moves, rich colours and a celebratory atmosphere.

Wilson, who directed Dawuni’s earlier ‘African Reggae Fever’ video, was inspired by one of his favourite documentaries, ’ When We Were Kings’ , which documented the famous Ali/Foreman ‘ Rumble in the Jungle’ bout that took place in Kinshasha, Zaire (now Democratic Republic of the Congo) on October 30, 1974. The video also references Afro Funke, Rocky’s world renowned cross cultural dance club in Los Angeles, and offers visual tributes to Nigerian Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti.

The video places the viewer immediately within the dynamic metaphorical space of a boxing gym, revealing the preparations of a prize fighter. Cloaked in the symbolic and unifying colours of the African motherland – red, gold and green, and with a black star prominently embroidered on the back of the fighter’s robe, our hero skips rope in time with the song’s initial beats.

According to Rocky Dawuni, ‘ African Thriller’ is a persona, a concept and a vision of what contemporary beauty and excitement would emerge from the confrontation and collision of cultures. The video hints at historical and cultural signposts in a metaphoric expression of how the dance floor is one of the ultimate and most colourful places for global unity, celebration and liberation.

‘African Thriller’ is the first single from Rocky Dawuni’s forthcoming album ‘ Branches of the Same Tree’, to be releasedby   Cumbancha in March 2015. The single is currently available on iTunes , Amazon , Spotify , Cumbancha’s webstore and other online outlets.

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