East London singer-songwriter, Msaki, releases her latest single Blood Guns and Revolutions this Friday.
The latest offering from the vocalist is a song that peers into the injustices that black South Africans continue to face at the hands of the police and the broader criminal justice system.
Msaki – who is also the vocalist behind the Sun-EL Musician smash hit, Ubomi Ubumanga – is no stranger to tackling social matters in her music.
Blood Guns and Revolutions conjures memories of the harrowing clip the nation saw of Fiksburg protester, Andries Tatane, shot and beaten by police officers on television and died of related injuries soon after.
Many South Africans recall the tragic scene vividly. I was in my second year of journalism at the time. We were asked to write an article about the ordeal for an assignment.
I could not put it in to words how the video clip made me feel, despite the fact that I always know how to structure a story.
The very next year, the country witnessed the Marikana Massacre, where police officers on a mine shot live ammunition at striking mineworkers, killing 34 and injuring 78.
With just a year having passed since Tatane, the Marikana Massacre left many South Africans even more devastated.
However, with all of these examples of police brutality, corruption and ineptitude, I never thought that my own family would also have to personally deal with the same police force that has failed so many families.
Eight years later, Cape Town resident Bulelani Qholani was dragged out of a shack in Khayelitsha township whilst naked.
While Qholani’s encounter with law enforcement officers did not prove as deadly as the previous examples, it certainly comes from the same place of black dehumanisation in South Africa.
Blood Guns and Revolutions speaks the grief of black people in South Africa. It extols the love and support these people continue to hold for one another and their hope for a democracy that ended up failing them.
Those who crave thought-provoking music with a generous dose of personality and soul will like this latest offering by Msaki.
Once again she proves herself as a critical artist, adept at expressing black pain through writing and music whilst urging the oppressed amongst us to continue to hold each other closely.