International Night Brought Through Zoom

Photo by Olivia Ross

By Bri Carr, Staff Writer-

On Thursday, Sept. 24, the office of Multicultural Affairs hosted International Night, with live music showcased on Chamberlain field and a livestream from 8-10 p.m.

The International Night event was a virtual Zoom performance that took place in the Barking Legs Theater. Kofi Mawuko & the Ogya World Music Band performed African tribe and African culturally inspired music for attendees, showcasing African and Jamaican cultures through music.

Because of the rain, the event was moved to Maclellan Gym and then was changed to be broadcasted on Zoom as weather difficulties continued. To make the best of the situation, attendees were encouraged to pick up a souvenir mask and blanket at Lupton Hall.

Despite the change of location and the limited number of people watching virtually, the band engaged with the audience in a variety of ways and even asked them to clap a certain way along with the beat of the song.

The performance brought fifty-five plus watchers on the Zoom call. The band started out with what Mawuko described as a “welcome song” using a Djembe, a specific type of drum that originates from West Africa.

The band switched from traditional African music to jazz sounding type of music, as well as adding in what Mawuko called a “Jamaican reggae” style-type of music. A popular song with this style covered self-motivation and pride, as the artist encouraged viewers to “go back to your roots.”

The band was comprised of a guitarist, a bassist, another singer, a saxophonist, as well as a drummer. Band members also played traditional instruments such as the West African drum and the Djembe. Throughout the performance, band members took turns being the lead player and lead singer.

Although the band was through the screen, the audience expressed their enjoyment and appreciation of the African-style music of the music through supportive comments in the Zoom chat.

Kofi Mawuko & the Ogya World Music Band can be seen again at music-based events around Chattanooga. To learn more about the band and the culture taught through their music, visit their Facebook page, “Kofi Mawuko & the Ogya World Music.”

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