Wednesday, May 27


Hieroglyphics - "Soweto"

For those of you who are scratching your heads, Soweto is a town in Johannesburg, South Africa. It's one of the poorest regions in Johannesburg, and was made famous for an uprising on June 16th, 1976 between black youths and the South African authorities. The riots grew out of protests against the policies of the National Party government and its apartheid regime. Police opened fire on 10,000 students marching from Naledi High School to Orlando Stadium, and in the events that unfolded, over 500 people died. June 16th is now a recognized as the holiday, Youth Day.

Soweto is also credited as one of the founding places for kwaito, which is a style of hip-hop specific to South Africa. It combines various elements of American hip-hop, house music, and traditional African music, and became a widespread form of expression amongst black South Africans. The spread of Soweto in popular culture influenced Hiero, and this song reflects the terrible conditions and changing social order in Soweto, saying that cowardice has ruled this area, but how now the "gems" of the youth need to express themselves.

They say you learn something new everyday, and hopefully you just did.

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