Sometimes it seems like every US and UK punk seven-inch ever released has had a book, a documentary, or at least a master’s thesis written about it. And you can at least find a decent compilation commemorating the early punk scenes of most countries — and most countries had them.
Africa, however, has been a punk rock terra incognita, that is, until now. The exhaustively researched documentary Punk In Africa, currently making the film festival rounds, is telling the truly untold story of punk music in South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique. Not surprisingly, it might be one of the world’s great music stories.
The scene in South Africa was multi-racial; the music was politically charged, uniquely African, and banned under Apartheid. Listen to the filmmakers tell OkayAfrica how the bands risked their lives just to play shows.
Keep an eye on the documentary’s site for screenings near you. And check out some of music up on the site too, because this is a story you’ve really got to hear.
Seriously, put down that copy of Get In the Van right now and watch this trailer: