The Pan Africa radio show has entered its next generation with an expanded group of six hosts who are natives of five countries. We recently gathered for a quick photo shoot in front of the station.
In alphabetical order, meet the hosts of the Pan Africa collective:
Esty Dinur grew up in Israel, a small country with people who have immigrated from all over the world, where she was naturally exposed to global music. Her father loved Russian, African and Italian music so she was exposed to world music at a young age. Miriam Makeba’s The Lion Sleeps Tonight was one of her favorites as a child. Years later, she became the first (and, so far, last) Artistic Director/Curator of the Madison World Music Festival which brought African artists from numerous countries and genres throughout the festival’s 17 years who were always very popular. Esty is excited to join the Pan Africa team in order to be able to continue bringing all sorts of wonderful music to Madison and beyond. She’s always interested in the context of the music and in sharing that context with her listeners.
Gloria Hays is a long-time listener, supporter and volunteer of WORT and says “It is one of the greatest joys of my life to be a part of the Pan Africa Collective. Each person is unique, diverse and knowledgeable, here to share music and more from the continent of Africa and beyond. I’m so thankful as I reflect back to shows I have hosted, dating back to the late ’80s as Thursday morning’s host on Needles in the Haystack, to the early 21st Century rotating hosts for On The Horizon, to the pandemic home-recorded Diaspora. Pan Africa has always held a special place in my heart. In Peace & Harmony.”
Ankur Malhotra, who hails from India, is an entrepreneur, engineer and musicologist with an MBA from the Wisconsin School of Business. DJ SpinCycle is a co-founder of Amarrass Records (a multi-faceted label, events and artist management company) and Madison Music Review (producer of Musique Electronique, Willy Street Beats), a DJ/host on WORT 89.9FM (Friday Buzz, Pan Africa) and a published photographer and videographer. Ankur has served as a Jury Member at WOMEX, music advisor to the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMoCA), and is a panelist for the Transglobal World Music Chart. His work in the revival of folk music and vinyl culture in India has been featured in the New York Times, NPR, BBC, WPR, WPT, Rolling Stone India and more.
Pape Samb is originally from Dakar, Senegal, West Africa. He is a Software and Electronic Engineer. He is the co-founder and President of Jamarek, a non-profit with a mission to promote intercultural exchanges and help the health and education systems. Pape is also working with Ankur to develop a program to connect artists from around the world and to share cultural and personal stories. He is very excited to be one of the new Pan Africa hosts and promises to bring new music from his home country of Senegal as well as great African musicians from around the continent. Indeed, he manages and mentors artists from Senegal.
Jeff Spitzer-Resnick has been hosting Pan Africa since he started subbing for the late DJ Laurie Mlatawou about 20 years ago. He continued as a regular sub for DJ Linda and Alhaji Njai when they were hosts of the show. He now hosts his own program, the Hejira world music radio show on Thursdays from 9 AM-Noon. He has had the opportunity to interview musicians from all over the world on WORT including the Italian Duo Bottasso; Fokn Bois from Ghana; Yocu Arrellano, drummer of Los de Abajo from Mexico; Zakir Hussain from India, and Dobet Gnahoré from the Ivory Coast. Professionally, he is a civil rights attorney who has always advocated for the disenfranchised. Jeff believes that WORT’s strong world music programming, including Pan Africa, helps bring people together by exposing them to the beauty of music throughout the world.
Dr. Linda Vakunta is originally from Cameroon, and got her PhD at UW-Madison a few years ago. She now serves as Deputy Mayor of Madison. DJ Linda has been hosting the Pan Africa radio show since 2009. She enjoys exploring new and older eras and enriching her shows with deep context as well as a touch of personal development reflections. She believes in the healing powers of music and sounds, and hence approaches each show with that consciousness.
Pan Africa airs every Saturday from 2-4 PM Central. With six diverse hosts from five countries, the current Pan Africa collective brings listeners the widest array of new and classic music from all over Africa. If you want to follow the show on Facebook, you can like the Pan Africa Radio Show Facebook page for news about the show, as well as new releases of African music and videos.
More Posts for Shows: A Public Affair, Eight O'Clock Buzz, Hejira, On The Horizon, Panafrica