For 8 hours, African artists joined their global counterparts for a virtual concert. Part of the aim was to raise money for the fight against COVID-19. The virtual concert organized by the Global Citizens and World Health Organization (WHO) streamed online on April 18, 2020. Also, it aired on major television networks across the globe. The concert was curated in collaboration with Lady Gaga. Speaking about the event, the Director-General of WHO Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said,
“The World Health Organization is committed to defeating the coronavirus pandemic with science and public health measures, and supporting the health workers who are on the frontlines of the response. We may have to be apart physically for a while, but we can still come together virtually to enjoy great music. The ‘One World: Together At Home’ concert represents a powerful show of solidarity against a common threat.”
The global event brought together more than 100 musicians—including three African artists. Consequently, the event was able to raise over $127m. The proceeds will go towards regional and local charities, vaccine development, and the organizers. Global citizens is calling on everyone to pledge to stay at home. When you make the pledge you also drop a message of the person inspiring you to stay at home. Kicking off the show, Lady Gaga said,
“I feel honored to be a part of the World Health Organization and Global Citizens, in the fight against COVID-19 and raising money for the Solidarity Response Fund. I care so much about all of the medical workers that are putting their lives at risk for us right now.”
South African artists lead African performers
Five African artists featured on the ‘One World: Together At Home’ virtual concert. Burna Boy was the only Nigerian artist on the list while the rest were South African artists. This includes Cassper Nyovest, Sho Madjozi, Black Coffee, and Delilah Montagu. The CEO of Global Citizens, Hugh Evans said,
“With the generous support of artists, record labels and the world’s biggest streaming services, ‘One World: Together at Home The Album’ will continue to generate support for the healthcare and other frontline workers around the world who are helping to save lives. With this album, fans will be able to revisit their favorite performances, while those who may have missed the live event will be able to experience the community created by this historic global event.”
A 79-song album of over 4 hours long from the concert is now available. It was made possible by the Global Citizens in collaboration with Universal Music Group. This will make it possible for those who missed the live event to relive the experience. Vogue created a list of their top 10 performers. However, it was practically a list of the top global musicians at the concert. Thus, our focus will be on African artists.
The Nigerian Afrobeat sensation is one of the African artists that need no introduction locally and internationally. He performed ‘African Giant’ and ‘Hallelujah’ with footage of citizens making a background cameo. According to data from Shazam, Burna Boy’s performance was the most searched of the night.
The South African rapper did not disappoint. Notwithstanding the little equipment at his disposal, Cassper was able to deliver a joyful performance. He is also a dancer, songwriter, record producer, and entrepreneur. Cassper is one of the most successful South African artists. He performed his hit song ‘Malome’.
Born Maya Christinah Xichavo, Sho Madjozi has grown to become a household name across the globe. She is a singer, songwriter, rapper, actress, and poet. Also, Madjozi is regarded as one of the best South African performers. At the virtual concert, she performed her soul-moving track ‘Good over Here’.
Black Coffee and Delilah Montagu
Arguably the most creative performance from African artists was pulled-off by Black Coffee and Delilah Montagu. Although the sensational DJ and Delilah were in their homes, they were able to team up by utilizing the power of technology. They performed their hit single ‘Drive’.
At the time of this post, the number of COVID-19 cases in Africa has grown to over 48,000 with close to 1,900 deaths. Nevertheless, over 16,000 have recovered from the virus. Due to economic pressures, some African governments are lifting lockdown measures. However, the WHO is warning that this has the tendency to reverse the gains made so far.