There is no end to all the great things happening and events taking place in Nairobi all the time, but if I could go to only one I think it would be Blankets & Wine. I am in love with Blankets & Wine.
This event concept is so brilliant and welcoming and cosy and inspiring. Every first Sunday of the month Blankets & Wine book some excellent afro-music bands, their music can be more pop or soul or fusion or ethnic… It depends, but it is always afro-based. Some are big well-known names like Sauti Sol or Dela (keep reading for more Dela), some less established gems. The B&W people know their stuff so one can trust their judgement entirely.
Blankets & Wine normally runs from 1:00 pm- 7 pm (read below for information about the extended edition this Sunday) so it’s a family friendly event, and you can also see if you check out previous Sundays that this music experience really attracts a very mixed happy crowd. Any music lover will feel at home.
Carnivore Gardens in Nairobi is the location during 2014 so that is where you need to go with someone you like for a whole Sunday of music magic. For that ultimate experience bring a Maasai shuka/ blanket/ kikoy’s and a picnic basket with your favorite contents.
This Sunday, September 7th, there will be a special edition of Blankets & Wine. Karibu Mzansi, to commemorate 20 years of democracy and post-apartheid in South Africa. Blankets & Wine are doing this special edition in collaboration with the South African High Commission in Kenya.
This special event will be longer, it will start at 1 pm and end at 10 pm. Apart from more time to enjoy music from four (!) different stages, there are many other special treats. For example, every adult ticket holder will be able to sample from a wide array of wine from South Africa’s world renown vineyards (topped up with a complementary bottle of wine courtesy of Distell Winemasters). You can also enjoy some delightful South African food as including the world famous braai which will be available from vendors on site. So picnic basket not necessary this particular Sunday.
Through ‘Karibu Mzansi’ Blankets & Wine and the South African High Commission join each other in the shared desire to promote urban African music, literature, art and culture. This means that for example artists will be both South African and Kenyan. Kenya will be represented by promising talents such as Vereso, Andrew Wambua, Antoneosoul and Dela. The headline artist for this event is a special performance by a top artist from South Africa. Courtesy of the South African High Commission, details to be announced very shortly.
For those who really want to get their dance game on there will be an all day long Afro-house party at the B&W DJ Stage with house guru Jack Rooster and the Caffe Mocha crew.
The B&W Writer’s Stage is curated by Kwani?, a Kenyan based literary network dedicated to developing quality creative writing and the publishing and distribution of contemporary African writing. Here you will have the opportunity to meet and interact with top writers and emerging voices from Kenya.
Of course with all this creativity in the air, you will feel your inspiration flowing perhaps… No problem. Then you can go to the Art Hive and create your own art with the help of Nairobi’s Made With Love and Kms art studios or take a drum lesson from the Drum Jam Collective.
Oh, and for the youngest ones (5-10 years) there will be a play pen with professional minders. (Entry is free for accompanied children under the age of 12 years.)
Tickets for this Sunday’s special edition of Blankets & Wine can be bought on www.ticketsasa.com for Ksh. 2,500 or at the gate. Each adult ticket comes with a complementary bottle of wine.
The thoughtful people of Blankets & Wine have even made a deal with Easy taxi for this weekend so you can get to and from the event easily.
So just to summarize: amazing musical and creative experience this Sunday in Nairobi at carnivore Gardens: artists, drum lessons, kids galore, great wine, inspiration, braai and then some just waiting for you. Yes, I love these people at Blankets & Wine and I really wish I was going… Please go and enjoy for me too. Oh but no, of course that’s not all… Because I got so inspired preparing this post I decided that there will be a Blankets & Wine after party here at Meanwhile In Kenya after the event. So come back for some great interviews, behind the scenes stuff, best of and an exclusive photo series by Joe Were who will capture this amazing Sunday especially for Meanwhile In Kenya.
A lot of good stuff, right?
PS: If you want to share your experience on Twitter the official hashtag for Sunday is #DiscoverLoveShare