Good Parents: Raising Consciousness on Africa
Windhoek – “What is a people without its own history, culture, language and identity?” Good Parents band poses this fundamental question in its debut album “Say It Loud and Clear”.
This Pan-African question stirs the conscience, as Africa celebrates 50 years of efforts to liberate the continent from foreign influence and promote Africanism.
Good Parents is a Namibian project created by PAPA Mike Nesongano to promote music aimed at educating and sharing experiences.
Every song on the 10-track album conveys a different message and everyone’s point of view will differ. “Like the word Africa has a different meaning to every individual,” says Mike Nesongano, publisher and songwriter of “Say it Loud and Clear”.
The album is a blend of Afro fusion and contemporary sounds with a mixture of kizomba, rhumba and other influences.
The five-member band comprises Lezi Vincent – a Congolese, who gives the album a strong rhumba flavour ‑ on lead vocals and lead guitar; PAPA Mike Nesongano (acoustic guitar and backing vocals), Ekstronela Geniroman (backing vocals), Olloy Marius (bass guitar and keyboards).
Two of the tracks on the album feature the Mbira Queen, a Namibian artiste who in her own right has won many hearts through her flair for foreign languages. The Zimbabwe-educated artiste also sings fluently in Shona.
“In the song, ‘Africa’ (track one), we are asking our leaders why names of various things such as streets have been changed but not the name of the continent.
“We have a name which does not bond us,” says Nesongano.
Track three (Are We Educated?) questions our intellectual capacity as individuals.
“Are we educated in the sense education is supposed to mean, in acquiring knowledge and skills in developing the nation? Also, our universities are a replica of other people’s wisdoms and now students are taught to attain other people’s cultures.
“Are we intoxicated or are we educated?” Nesongano asks.
“Tell Me Why” asks about some of today’s prophets who are stealing in the name of the Lord. They say they have the amazing grace from God to bless you, while they are selling the amazing grace in order to enrich themselves.
“Moreover everybody preaches and prays about heaven but when they fall ill they don’t want to die and go there, why?” asks Nesongano, adding, “We all know that nobody wants to die.”
“An Open Letter” is dedicated to the African Heads of State. It basically says that when we got independence we had aspirations on the political industry and power that will be used to change our economic situation, after all without an economic situation political power is nothing. “Independence is not only about having a national flag and black faces in parliament, while people live in shantytowns,” says Nesongano.
The song also touches on the International Court of Justice, which Nesongano says proves that we Africans are irresponsible.
“What Is Life” is a bit different, not political. It’s pretty much that life is what we make it. It’s not a straight road, has ups and downs and that in life you live the life you have decided to live.
Nesongano is of the opinion that poverty is a result of laziness “you can, therefore, make life right or hell for yourself”.
“Lastly, ‘My Poems’ is what all my songs are based on and we are using through music to bring about change.”
Good Parents recently shot a video of the album and it should be on the market soon.