By Radha Sathanayagam
I created a map representation of the continent of Africa that points out each of the home nations of the singers on the track “Strong Girl.” I also include brief information about the careers and roles of each woman, as well as a quote from each singer (quote not from their song) to give their perspective. [For more explanation on Radha's project, read here.]
Waje (Word’s aren’t just enough)
Waje is a singer, mother, U.N. ambassador for Peace, and ONE ambassador for the Poverty Is Sexist Campaign.
“I feel that one of the challenges is to be tagged as a female musician. We put in the same amount of hours in the studio. So, if I am to be appreciated as a musician I just want to be appreciated for my work.”
Yemi Alade has won two MTV African Music Awards and has the most watched video on YouTube by an African woman. She has toured throughout the world and says she wants to “inspire young boys and girls all over the world to be anything they want to be.”
“Ladies can we just get together, respect each other and not put ourselves against each other.”
Omotola Jalade Ekeinde
She is a singer, actress, and former model who also served as a UN World Food Program Ambassador. In 2013, she was named as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
“While going to school, and working, [I] faced many challenges as a female child...She has worked, spoken on, been awarded on World stages , and has been compared to the people she admired when growing up , from other parts of the World... She's still a work in progress but... Don’t You dare Underestimate the possibilities of a girl Child.”
Victoria Kimani is a singer, songwriter, and actress who was the first female signed to her record label, Chocolate City.
“People need to start respecting female entertainers, presenters, Actors, artists, Models, dancers, business women, PR, managers, PA’s, singers, stylists , DJ’s, designers and generally all positions in the Entertainment field in Africa
Vanessa Mdee (Vee Money)
She is a singer, songwriter, and TV and radio host. She is also an ambassador for the GAVI vaccine alliance where she promotes health education, especially regarding prevention of HPV and cervical cancer.
“It’s about time proper healthcare is administered for all, especially the future generation… Giving my younger sisters a chance – that’s one less killer to worry about.”
Arielle T is a singer, songwriter, dancer, and also a mother. She has been nominated multiple times for MTV African Music Awards.
“Music has the power to enter people’s lives and accompany them in their most intimate moments.”
Blessing is a dancer, singer, and rapper, who sang on the “Strong Girls” track at only fourteen years old. At the time, she was living at the Makeba Centre for Girls, which provides support to women who have escaped harmful situations.
“In the townships of South Africa it’s hard for girls. There is poverty, abuse, and it’s difficult for girls to stand up for themselves. I know first-hand that poverty is sexist, and that our leaders have to do more to support girls and women. Because when they are allowed to reach their full potential, girls and women lift their families, communities and even whole countries out of poverty faster.”
She is a singer who performs jazz and Afro-pop and is known as the “first lady of African Jazz.” She recorded on her independent record label, Lalomba Music. She is also a mother and started the Judith Sephuma foundation for empowering children and young women in South Africa.
“Women are so strong. If you empower a woman, you empower a continent.”
Mtukudzi is an Afro-Jazz singer and an actress. She has won many accolades including an African Entertainment Award.
“When we deny girls an education, we deny our countries the leaders we need to grow and prosper. Getting girls in school is one of the most effective ways we can fight extreme poverty. Educating every girl is good for everyone.”
She is a performing artist who also co-owns the production company G&G.