Category Archives: Music & Entertainment

Reggae Rising! At the Republic bar and grill

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Jahwi called me up a few weeks ago and asked if I would be interested in joining him, Knii Lante and a few other artists in a Reggae concert at the Republic. I didn’t need to think too long before I agreed. I’ve been to the Republic bar and grill in Osu and have seen the sort of clientele, food, beverages, and ambience it has. Absolutely groovy! It’s an interesting set up because the party sort of “spills out” onto the street. The stage and half the seating is set up outside on the street, and is fast becoming the place to hang out for live music on Wednesdays.

Ebo Taylor has been there; recently Wanlov and Mensah a.k.a the FOKN Bois were there, Sena was there, Funsho and the Ayetoro band were there couple of weeks ago, and tomorrow it’s going to be a nice line up featuring Knii Lante, Osagyefo, Jahwi, Fiifi Selah, Black I, Ras Kuuku and yours truly, Yasmeen.

The band we are playing with is called the Big hills band, a really talented set. I’ve enjoyed rehearsing with them so far and enjoyed watching how they transition from one artist to the other. We have all had the challenge of time management during our short opportunity to rehearse together before the show but now that we’ve got our act together it’s only going to get better since we may be taking this gig on the road.

We’ve dubbed it the “Reggae Rising tour” and I’m looking forward to coming to a stage near you. Follow our hash tag on social media #ReggaeRising let’s share love and great music. See you tomorrow night at the Republic bar and grill in Osu, Accra. Showtime: 8PM.  😉

Some pics from rehearsal:
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Here’s a pic of my annoyed face. Late and caught in traffic on my way to rehearsal yesterday.

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Lol.

See you tomorrow!!
One love

Reminiscent photos of “Felabration” 2014

I wish I could have blogged in real time when I went to Nigeria to participate in “Felabration” last October however Internet issues wouldn’t allow. Here is a brief recap in pictures. It was a fun trip!

Before we left Accra:
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Upon arrival in Lagos I met Femi and Yeni Anikulapo Kuti, children of the late Fela Anikulapo Kuti.
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After this meeting I was whisked off to the hotel to get some rest for the following day.
Next day at sound check at the shrine:
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And then later that night:
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Here I am backstage with Wanlov:
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..and Nneka:
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The next show was held at Freedom park on Victoria island and I have to say that was my favorite show:
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These last two images were captured by Logor, a truly talented photographer whom I sat and had a chat with for about twenty minutes before the show. He seemed truly passionate about what he does and it shows!

After all the concerts I had a day off for a little sightseeing. Ummu, my assistant for this trip, took me into a Hausa community where I got a sneak peek into the lives of the people who live there. I also got me some awesome Henna tattoos:
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When I look at these beautiful designs I think of the women who surrounded me with love and gave me this gift in ‪Nigeria‬. I remember the beautiful young artist, made to cover herself, not daring to look into my eyes or have a full conversation with me because I am not one of “them”. When she did look at me and smile, I felt her pain and I understood that her art is a huge outlet for her. I think of the ones who rushed over to have a peep at me. They rushed back into their rooms before it was found out that they had actually ventured to go outside. Then I think of the mother of a newborn, who came and handed her 10 day old baby girl to me as if to say, “please bless her and give her your vibes.” It was almost as if she hoped for a different destiny for this baby girl. I couldn’t take pictures with them but their faces are drawn on the canvass of my mind. When I look at these drawings I see the hopes and dreams that may never materialise. These are the souvenirs I brought back from Nigeria. ‪‬

Independence day – “kpa kpa kpa!” playlist

It’s independence day and I’m so tired…

Physically, mentally, emotionally,.. its been quite intense lately. We are facing great challenges as a nation and each and every one of us is affected. Corruption is the disease that is eating through our governing institutions,  and miseducation is keeping most of us in a self imposed jail. 

The latest thing is the ongoing “Dumsor” crisis. I mean, this problem has been in existence here ever since I can remember but recently, it’s the worse it has ever been. “Dumsor” means “on-off” in twi – a Ghanaian local language. This is referring to the regular power cuts we are experiencing as a result of inefficiencies in our energy system. Electricity is scarce these days. Cost of having it is so high. Cost of NOT having it is even higher. Businesses are folding up and saying goodbye because they can’t afford to continue running their businesses in such difficult conditions. It’s time for us to find sustainable solutions. Of course we’ve heard of solar power and other alternative energy solutions but where is the effort, hard work, discipline, and selflessness that needs to go into making these ideas work for Ghana?

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Students study for their exams by candlelight

Electricity is not the only challenge. We have water problems, waste management issues, rising cost of living, and some really serious environmental issues. I always try to look on the bright side of life (no matter how hard it gets) and I must say I’m really proud of some Ghanaians for their “adaptation techniques” [kpa kpa kpa! << inside joke!]. I'm not just an artist, I'm also a business woman, sharing the pain of my fellow Ghanaians especially small-scale entrepreneurs. I've had to adapt, to re-strategize,  to manoeuvre,  and to "kpa kpa kpa" my way through the first quarter of this year and today, on our 58th independence day, I thank the electricity company of Ghana for keeping my lights on while I take the day off. Today I want to do absolutely nothing apart from having a nice day with my family and as I type this in my bed I wish all Ghanaians a reflective independence day, and I hope the lights stay on.

Here are a few "Dumsor" songs and clips on YouTube (yes it's that bad):

DUM – SOR by Creo concepts

“Mi ma mo Dumsor” – 1Fame feat. wanlov

Dumsor song by wOne

This one is a track I did with UK based producer – Richy Pitch:
“Mother dey suffer” – Richy Pitch feat. Yasmeen

And if you just want to listen to some of my tracks (but of course you do! Lol! )

Here’s my ReverbNation link:
Yasmeen songs on ReverbNation

Or..

Click here to visit my soundcloud

One love!

NEW MUSIC VIDEO! “MEDICATION” by Yasmeen.

Yasmeen (OFFICIAL VIDEO)” on YouTube

After the death of my kid brother Waleed my life suddenly went really dark. Nothing could make me smile. It makes me wonder how my husband (then fiancé) put up with me through those years. I put down these words during that time of struggle.

Everyone has their form of “Medication”. That thing, or those things that they depend on to help ease their suffering.

Music to me is therapy. It has been a huge outlet for me and I am so glad I could record and share it with you all.

Whatever you are going through and whatever “medication” you are on, stay positive and keep believing in love. ♡

I kissed the sun.

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I kissed the sun
And asked it why
It kissed me back
because I lied.
I lied about what was 
on my mind
I lied about it
till I cried.
My tears became 
sun dried.
My brain became 
Stir fried.
My son forgive me sun,
My sun, forgive me son,
Because I lied.
Because I lied.
Tomorrow is another day
Maybe then it will be real
And true…
Maybe then,
It will be you.

♡ Poem and photo by Yasmeen ♡

Continue reading I kissed the sun.

Medication. . . Photos from my video shoot

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Here are a few photos from the set of my new music video.

My song “Medication” is the story of a dark time in my life after the loss of my brother Waleed. The song is about the cry of a soul, begging to be released from a place of darkness and sorrow.

“Please give me my medication
Help me find some inspiration
Keep my soul in meditation. .”

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In the club but feeling down. .
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"Black widow" inspired scene
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Beach resort scene
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At Kokrobite beach in Ghana

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In this beach sunrise photo I was super tired! We were up shooting for most of the night and then had to be up again by 5am to catch this beautiful morning light.

Can’t wait to share the video with you!

One love always.

Still We Rise!

Love movement stand up!! I’m rejuvenated and happy and guess what? I release two singles within the last month. Yaaay! It’s been nine months since I had my little angel and about 3 months since I’ve been back in the studio. The album is almost finished and I’m looking forward to a really exciting 2014. I just thought I would make this long over-due post, and tell you, my dear readers, how the last part of 2013 has been for me.

Very exciting! I must say! the universe seems to be granting me a great deal of harmony by creating the exact situations, opportunities, and encounters I need to move up into a better place in my life, soul, and spirit. In November I released my single “Yellow Moon” < < Click to download , and just last Saturday I released my new dance single “Still We Rise” << click to download.

Last Saturday, Dec 14th, I had a marathon event that involved M.Y. Beauty Cafe, and my new single. During the day (from 4pm), we had M.Y Christmas spa party. Everything in-store was reduced by 15%, we had cocktail refreshments including various fruit drinks, fruit khebabs, sandwiches, meatballs, ham rolls and more. Maria Owusu was there to talk to us about the health benefits of Coconut Oil and ways it can be used to improve health and wellness. Friends and clients of Madame Yasmeen were pampered and encouraged to maintain the eco-friendly lifestyle.

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As day wore on into night, our nocturnal friends began to arrive for the second part of the event – my single release. M.Y Beauty Cafe remained open throughout the night, and at this point I’ve just got to mention how beautiful it was having the store full of bubbles, drifting outside into the night, and sometimes over to Chez Nicole Restaurant/Pub next door.

By 7pm, guests had begun moving towards Chez Nicole Restaurant/Pub. Food and drinks were still going around, I greeted guests and gave a short welcome message. At 8pm I gave a short performance for the sake of the ‘early’ and ‘older’ guests who would not stay the night. By 11pm the street in front of Chez Nicole and M.Y Beauty Cafe was popping! We had young, and old, meek and wild, bikers, and booty shorts 🙂

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At midnight, Myself, Waseem, and Andre performed “Still We Rise” again, and some lucky guests won prizes including hampers and personal care products by Madame Yasmeen.

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And my favorite shot came from a FAN CAM! Thanks Mirvat for taking this shot below 🙂 We had a blast.

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DOWNLOAD STILL WE RISE FOR FREE!! >>> CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD <<

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Okyeame Kwame for Ghana’s Digital Movement

This morning I attended a press conference organized by Okyeame Kwame, MTN and Techno. The theme – ‘Digital Migration’ referred to the changing trends in music distribution from physical to digital. Okyeame Kwame will be releasing his new album ‘The Clinic’ exclusively through MTN’s newest music service – ‘MTN Radio’. The service allows mobile phone and smart phone users to subscribe, create playlists, and download songs for a small fee, simply by dialing in to the short code 1303.

A large percentage of Ghanaians do NOT download music via the internet, but almost every Ghanaian has a mobile phone. A growing number of Ghanaians either own smart phones or aspire to own one. There are 10 million subscribers currently on the MTN network in Ghana. It’s about time! I’m personally excited about the possiblities presented here, but as Obuor rightly said at the conference, it is the revenue sharing percentages that would determine if this is really a good deal for us the artists. Okyeame Kwame is leading the way, and his success will influence and inspire other artists to join the digital revolution. I myself will be featuring on a song with Okyeame Kwame on his new album, and look forward to digitizing my work on our local networks as well.  Considering our poor(physical) distribution network, this is the way forward. I get numerous calls, messages, and e-mails from fans who have a hard time finding and buying my CDs and it gets frustrating considering the fact that Cantamanto is the music headquarters of Accra. Enough said.

As the poster-child for MTN on this project, and since he will be releasing his new album exclusively through MTN Radio, Okyeame Kwame’s songs will be selling for .95p per song while other artists will be selling for .30p per song. Okyeame Kwame also pledged 20% of all his sales towards free Hepatitis B screening across Ghana.

Over the last decade, the landscape of the global music industry has been transformed, and it’s time for Africa to join the digital revolution. Companies like SPICE and SPINLET are emerging to facilitate this digital movement in partnership with the mobile phone networks who currently hold the key to unlocking Africa’s ‘iTunes’ potential.

Left to right: Okyeame Kwame, Yasmeen, Kwame ‘Swift’ Farkye