Toto’s Africa Will Now Play For Eternity In The Desert, As Was Preordained
Exactly as the prophecy foretold, Toto’s ‘Africa’, the meme song of the moment, will play for all eternity in the middle of the desert.
Yep, thanks to a Namibian-born artist named Max Siedentopf, one of the catchiest soft rock songs of the ’80s will become a permanent fixture of the continent that inspired it.
‘Africa’ has experienced a new, surprising surge in popularity as of late.
First, after a long and persistent viral campaign, it was covered by indie-rock heroes Weezer, thrusting it into that nuanced online hall of fame alongside other “Do I Like This Or Do I Like Making Fun Of It” classics like Daryl Braithwaite’s ‘Horses’, and Smash Mouth’s ‘All Star’.
Then, in a markedly stranger turn of events, it was covered by Pitbull for inclusion in the billion-dollar blockbuster Aquaman. (Yes, that’s a real sentence, not a very odd, very 2019 game of Mad Libs.)
Now, Siedentopf’s installation is the new stage in an evolutionary process that has seen the song transform from your dad’s favourite tune to head bop along to into a bizarre, multi-faceted cultural object.
The installation is solar-powered, hence Siedentopf’s claim that it will keep on playing forever.
Of course, it’s also nothing more than six speakers attached to a regular old MP3, so one can imagine that heat and sand damage – not to mention the universe’s cheeky habit of moving from a state of order to a state of disorder – might get to it a little earlier than Siedentopf is claiming.
But hey, it’s still a great idea, particularly because Siedentopf has refused to give out the precise location of the installation: it’s just located somewhere in the Namib Desert, inland from the Sandwich Harbour.
That means for at least the next ten years or so, wherever you are, whatever twists and turns your life might take, you can always take heart in the fact that somewhere out there, ‘Africa’ is gently singing to itself.
(Lead image: Max Siedentopf)