Niamey by night

The bar is called The New's. The blue and white painted walls encircle a courtyard of broken mosaic tile. The crowd pours back beer in amber bottles, men in tight fitted t-shirts and suit jackets sitting statuesque and bored or a handful losing their shit on the dancefloor. A flickering…

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the reuse of old objects

Radio Hanna Broadcast Radio Hanna is housed in an old dilapidated cinema in Gao, Mali. Vestiges of the movie theater remain: rusted seats on the balcony and a giant projection screen -- flanked by piles of wood, wandering goats, and a woman pounding a mortar and pestle. Families rent the…

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white horses

It's quiet in the dusty bus station, save for the hum of the fluorescent lights. The bus stands like a monument, a behemoth yellow vessel with its logo emblazoned on the side -- a map of Niger and a galloping white horse. In the dark corners of the yard still…

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festival au desert pt. 2

There are a lot of festivals in the desert. Two features of nearly every festival are the sub-standard sound systems and traditional tende. Unfortunately, most of the time the tende is distorted beyond comprehension. Fortunately in the case of Festival Shiriken the equipment is so bad that the amplifier burns…

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of love and eyebrows

After two years, the tracks of popular West African tunes found on cellphones were released, remixed, and now successfully returned to their point of collection Kidal, Mali. (previously) As a rebellion seems to break out days prior to my depart, the 30 microSD memory cards are handed to a truck…

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