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Everything you need to know about Africa Oyé 2024

4 weeks ago

Everything you need to know about Africa Oyé 2024

Headlining the live music offering this year are Julian Marley – Grammy Award-winning son of Bob – with his band The Uprising, and the creative feminine force of Les Amazones d’Afrique.

Julian Marley is the son of reggae legend Bob Marley and Lucy Pounder. Growing up as a youth in a musical atmosphere, the singer-songwriter, producer and humanitarian quickly adopted a musical lifestyle and at an early age became a skillful, self-taught musician mastering bass, drums, guitar and keyboards. In 2024 Julian won the Grammy Award for the ‘Best Reggae Album’, with his 2023 record ‘Colors of Royal’, making it the14th Grammy win for the Marley family.

Les Amazones d’Afrique is a creative force formed in Bamako, Mali, in 2014 by three Malian music stars and social change activists, Mamani Kéta, Mariam Doumbia and Oumou Sangaré [who headlined Africa Oyé in 2022]. The collective has since expanded to involve many female artists from across Africa and the diaspora, including Angélique Kidjo, Nneka and rising Malian star Rokia Koné. While their cause, campaigning for gender equality and eradicating ancestral violence, is worthy enough in itself, their musical creative expression is equally powerful.

DJ Line-Up

Africa Oye
DJ Edu / photo by Mark McNulty

In recent years, Africa Oyé has gained a reputation for platforming some of the region’s best emerging DJ talent, alongside some familiar faces and a handful of guests from a little further afield.

Two of the UK’s biggest names in African, Caribbean and Afrocentric sounds will play between the live acts on Oyé’s Main Stage this year, whilst the two dedicated DJ stages – Trenchtown and Freetown – will feature an eclectic ensemble of DJs, selectors and collectives, all providing the perfect backdrop to the weekend in Sefton Park.

This year, Seani B marks his Africa Oyé debut. One of the world’s leading dancehall and reggae DJs, Seani’s weekly BBC 1Xtra show is the most listened to specialist programme on the network, as well as having amassed over 90 million views for his sessions from Jamaica. In 2021 he was awarded the prestigious Broadcasters Press Guild Award for ‘Best Broadcaster Of The Year’ across all radio programmes in the UK.

Oyé are also delighted to be welcoming back DJ Edu. Born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya, Edu began his career as one of the premier Homeboyz DJ crew, a resident at Carnivore, and as a presenter on Capital FM. Having been voted the Best Kenyan DJ in the UK in 2004, he started to see his life-long ambition materialise; putting the latest and greatest sounds produced by Africa’s new generation on the global map.

Through his BBC Radio1 and 1Xtra platforms, Edu has been able to break some of the biggest names on the global African music scene in the UK, including artists such as K’Naan, Nneka, Akon, and many more.

The Trenchtown Stage

Africa Oye
Photo: Nick Clague

Trenchtown was the festival’s first dedicated DJ space, established in 2012. It has played host to many of the city’s Dub and Reggae-inspired DJs, as well as showcasing some of the more upfront African sounds, including Amapiano, Kwaito, Gqom and Afro House. Trenchtown also features the original Oyé Inn with a comfortable seating area ideal for chilling out, and plenty of space for dancing the weekend away!

This year at Trenchtown, along with a selection of returning Oyé favourites, the festival will welcome some exciting new names, including DJ NS, Lady Spice and DANYKAS DJ. Following their storming set at Oyé ’23, G33 & Hannah Lynch (Girls Don’t Sync) are back to headline Trenchtown on the Saturday evening!

This is followed by a Reggae and Bass-heavy line up on Sunday, including sets by Dub Defenders, In Fine Style and Jamie Ape, to warm everyone up for Julian Marley’s headline set.

The Freetown Stage

Africa Oye
Girls Don’t Sync / photo by Stuart Kime

Celebrating it’s sixth year at Oyé, Freetown will offer a diverse programme throughout the weekend, providing the finest in Afrobreat, Afro Disco, Latin and Jazz, as well as Funk, Soul, Hip Hop and Disco.

With seating providing the ideal chill-out zone, and a dancefloor for those that feel like moving, be sure to come along to sit back and relax – or to get up and dance!

2024 will see Freetown debuts from Colin Williams, Amber Rose and more. The festival are also happy to be welcoming back the likes of Eve’s Drop, Dharma Collective, and Lyrical Compact to the Freetown stage.

Oyé Active Zone

Africa Oyé
Credit: Mark Mcnulty

The Africa Oyé audience are encouraged to do much more than just watch and appreciate the live music at the festival. As part of an extensive offering of free workshops all weekend, Liverpool’s own world dance charity Movema curate the Oyé Active Zone (OAZ), supported by The Granada Foundation. Celebrating 15 years of the OAZ in 2024, expect a range of activities for the whole family, with people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds having the chance to take part in the eclectic mix of activities ,all led by top local and international companies.

As well as the high energy dance workshops provided by Movema themselves, other activities on offer in the OAZ include yoga, capoeira, and traditional drumming circles. Plus, ahead of a main stage set from international star, Vox Sambou, the Haitian MC’s own choreographer, Warda Brédy, will lead a traditional Haitian dance workshop.

In addition to the OAZ, Katumba Drumming and Movement will be leading a parade across the park on the festival Sunday, bringing a melting pot of UK big beat, Caribbean calypso and the carnivals of North East Brazil to create an explosion of rhythmic revelry.

The Oyé Village & Traders

Credit: Mark McNulty

The eclectic mix of food stalls and traders at the festival have become as big a draw as the live performance in recent years at Africa Oyé. Authentic African, Mediterranean, Asian, English and Caribbean cuisine, traditional French crepes, baguettes, Italian paninis, fresh fruit smoothies, cookies, hot donuts and pastries, and fresh ground coffee will be on sale, along with stalls selling everything from arts, crafts, hats, clothing, jewellery and accessories.

You can also find charities, training, demonstrations, workshops, storytelling and more, in the cultural extravaganza known as ‘The Oyé Village’.

Access and BSL

Africa Oye
Photo: Mark McNulty

Africa Oyé is striving to make the festival more accessible for all their fans. Once again the festival will feature an Accessible Viewing Platform, British Sign Language (BSL) on stage to accompany the festival acts, as well as a dedicated Access Tent with BSL workshops.

The on-stage high-definition video wall assists those with visual impairments and there will be increased stewarding around the accessible toilets.

Getting to the festival

Road closures & traffic management update for 2024

Africa Oye
Photo: Mark McNulty

Following record numbers at the festival last year and similar attendees expected this weekend, Oyé have worked with Liverpool City Council on a new Traffic Management plan to minimise illegal parking and access issues. Please see below for a summary of new measures put in place this year.

Croxteth Drive will be closed to general traffic, other than residents and Africa Oyé’s workforce, on Saturday 22nd & Sunday 23rd June 2024, between the Obelisk at Croxteth Drive and the car park at Croxteth Gate, between the hours of 8.00am and 10.30pm.

Entry to Greenbank Lane from Greenbank Road will be closed to general traffic, other than residents and Africa Oyé’s workforce, on Saturday 22nd & Sunday 23rd June 2024, between the hours of 8.00am and 10.30pm. This will create a one-way system from Croxteth Gate along Mossley Hill Drive, and still allow people to park in an orderly fashion along the perimeter of Sefton Park.

The car park at Livingston Drive North will be managed by stewards, who will stop access to the park other than Café staff, or those approved by Africa Oyé’s Event Control.

If the need arises there will be a contingency plan to close access to Mossley Hill Drive from Ullet Road to general traffic, thereby only allowing access to residents and Africa Oyé’s workforce. Similarly, the closure at the Obelisk will be moved out to Ullet Road restricting access to general traffic.

Traffic Enforcement Officers will also be located in the festival vicinity all weekend.

By Bike

Liverpool might not typically be described as a “cycling city”, but getting around the city on 2 wheels is becoming increasingly easier and more popular. You’ll find a surprising number of cycle lanes throughout the city and there are plans for a new 8km cycle lane which will connect Childwall to the Lime Street corridor and the city’s waterfront. If you want to hire a bicycle or e-bike during your time in Liverpool, here are some options

By Rail

Credit: Merseyrail
Credit: Merseyrail

Getting the train to Oyé couldn’t be easier with Merseyrail. Sefton Park is in walking distance from St Michaels station on the Hunts Cross line. Take the Northern Line towards Hunts Cross and get off at St Michaels. Walk down Belgrave Road to Aigburth Road, then cross the road onto Lark Lane and walk the full length of Lark Lane and you’ll come to Sefton Park. The walk is about 1 mile. Use L17 3AD for walking directions on Google Maps.

For ticket prices visit Merseyrail. Alternatively, you can plan your journey using the Merseyrail App, and also get live departure times and directions to each station. The Merseyrail App is available to download for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play for Android.

By Bus

Arriva - Africa Oye Bus

There are a large variety of buses that will take you to Sefton Park on Saturday and Sunday courtesy of our friends at Arriva North West!

Service 75 from Liverpool ONE Bus Station or Great Charlotte Street to Halewood operates from every 15 minutes on Saturday, every 30 minutes on Sunday. Services 80 and 80A from Liverpool ONE Bus Station or Great Charlotte Street to Speke & Liverpool Airport combined services operate from every 20 minutes on Saturday, and the 80A runs from every 20 minutes on Sunday.

Find out more information on the Africa Oye website.

Find all the latest Liverpool news here.

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