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Published on May 22, 2013
"The people need a female rapper," says Toussa, the president of GOTAL; an all-women's collective of Senegalese rappers, producers, singers and beat makers who paired with a woman-led NGO called Speak Up Africa to write songs about global health issues in their communities.
Developed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Beat Making Lab is a program that brings the tools and techniques of digital music making to young musicians in developing nations. Episodes documenting the experience in Senegal will air Wednesdays on PBS Digital Studios' Beat Making Lab channel. Professor Pierce Freelon and producer Apple Juice Kid host.
The Architects: Stephen Levitin (aka Apple Juice Kid) and Pierce Freelon
Mastermind of Videography and Editing: Saleem Reshamwala aka Kid Ethnic (additional camera work by Felix Sarr)
Show Wrapper Magicians: Josh Souter (stop motion/logo), Emily Forsberg (photography), Kelly Mertestdorf (producer)
Senegal kin folk: Speak Up Africa: Fara Ndiaye, Awa Ndoye, Yacine Djibo, Felix and Abdul; Toussa's family, Intrahealth, Blaise Senghor Cultural Center, Darra J Family, Julie Pitts [Woodville NC].
We would like to give special thanks Ali Colleen Neff, who introduced us to Toussa and GOTAL. This project would not have been possible without her insight and support. Read more about Ali Colleen Neef's work on women artists in Senegal: