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Five on it: another salute to Bandcamp Day

From Veda Black to Stef Fi, this week's Five on it is shining a light on some incredible Black and POC artists on Bandcamp.

06 Nov 2020

Five on it Bandcamp Day meme via Inzanely Rejected / canva

Few things have felt consistent this year. Even fail-safe Five on it has not always been like clockwork these past few months (take last week, for example, wherein due to last-minute circumstances I was unable to write it up).

It’s weird, because in some ways lockdown again makes life feel like some kind of Groundhog Day / Russian Doll situation – each day the same, familiar, but with certain elements that are still, somehow, unpredictable. It’s days of sitting through election results, as you were warned would happen, but still being surprised – still raising eyebrows when the current President of the United States gives speeches full of nonsense.

But one thing that has at least become a regular staple is Bandcamp Day. Rain or shine, the first Friday of every month the music platform has been a beautiful thing in this pandemic, offering 100% of the fee made from sales to the artists. For context on how big a difference this might make to an artist’s livelihood, The Guardian reported that, while Spotify does not disclose how much it pays artists per stream, analysts have calculated it at about $0.00318.

Black Bandcamp have a great crowdsource list of releases from Black artists, which is worth checking out before doing your shop.

For Five on it this week, I’m just rounding up five releases you can spend a bit of coin on via Bandcamp today. Largely, they’re things I missed shouting out at the time which I think are very worth your attention. And yes, I’m leaning into the sad girl guitar music because it’s autumn and my SAD is coming! 

Anyway, buy lots of tunes! In the midst of re-lockdown and increasingly dark days, the joy of music and helping out your faves is going to be immeasurable.

Stef Fi – Girlhood

https://steffi.bandcamp.com/album/girlhood

You might know her from her excellent work in Black feminist punk band Big Joanie, but you should get to know Stef Fi in her own right. This solo project brims with fluid guitar and potent emotion.

Veda Black – Sad Girls Club

https://vedablack.bandcamp.com/album/sad-girls-club-2

All sweet, soft vocals and guitars like a dream, this is like Solange-meets-Tumblr (aka amazing). South-east Londoner Veda Black really did something beautiful with this when it dropped earlier this year.

Christelle Bofale – Swim Team

https://christellebofale.bandcamp.com/album/swim-team

Sink into those lush, immersive guitars and that gorgeous voice, this is a record of propulsive lo-fi guitar pop from the Texas-based artist.

Chalo – Chalo

https://thejazzdiaries.bandcamp.com/album/chalo

A compilation made-up of South Asian artists with all proceeds going to two charities in India and Pakistan, this is a rich and thrilling set of sounds that celebrates just how excellent emerging music in South Asia and across its diaspora currently is. It genuinely makes me feel warm listening to it. Plus, that artwork!!

Denise Chaila – Go Bravely

https://denisechaila.bandcamp.com/album/go-bravely

One of our 2020 ones to watch, the Irish MC showed just why we’re so excited about what she’s doing with her album, out last month. All deft, lilting sing-song delivery, wry, poetic lyrics and beautiful musicality, this is special.