London has long been one of the world’s most influential pop culture centers, particularly with fashion and music. It’s had everything from the Sex Pistols to the West Indian rhythms of Notting Hill Carnival to today’s grime scene. But the pop sound of modern London is about to take a distinctly African flavor with the launch of the UK’s first Afrobeats music radio station.
The Beat FM, a popular Lagos radio station, started broadcasting from a north London community radio license yesterday. It will be the UK’s gateway to the rhythmic and hypnotic hip-hop influenced music of Africa’s fast-growing youthful cities like Accra, Nairobi, Dar es Salaam and Lagos.