Ploum Ploum

Speaking of 1960s & Co, Monsieur Glückauf! today indirectly pointed me to Jean-Marie Boursicot’s Film Library [which] provides a huge database of more than 700 000 commercials. They also have this Gauloises commercial I’ve mentioned the other day.

A country/continent search on "Africa" reveals the following commercials among others:

FIAT 13, une voiture pour homme, une voiture pour toi ! (1970)
(nb: a french commercial with a KENYAN numbaaa plate? :-)

PLOUM PLOUM parfum de Paris (1966)

OMO washes brightest (1965)

SOL, la première lessive bleue (1976)

BLUE BAND, la margarine bonne mine (1985)

SIMBA, pour une cuisine Zaïroise plus raffinée .(1993)

And a classic 3:15min piece from 1952 for ASPRO (Aspirin®):

(watch his clothing!)

and within another ASPRO commercial from Algeria:

shuukran, Aspro…

Sorry, direct/hot linking of these mpeg files didn’t work – see it as an incentive to take a stroll through this interesting historical library of commercials and make your own picture of how the world has changed during the last 50 years. Well, has it really changed?

The criticism I have is that (I think) people watch these phoney worlds on tv and try to adopt their lifestyle according to what they see. So what about those that orientate themselves and their standard of living on these commercials and yet don’t have the resources to actually compare these tv worlds with reality (in the West)?
Remember those Royco Mchuzi Mix commercials from early 1990s Kenya where all the kids of this posh mid-class family gather round the table, asking mum for another round of spiced chicken ("more please!")? How many families back in those days were actually living that way? And today? Today, it seems, even the hawkers on the streets have a GSM mobile phone. Yes – that’s our Africa. Not (only!) this half-naked guy as seen in the Aspro commercial. Yani, is this still the african Africa or the westernized Africa? Wrong question?

How did this world of Cussons Soap, Smirnoff Vodka, BlueBand Margarine & Royco Mchuzi Mix – as seen on tv – actually affect the lifes of ordinary people?

In the same way (attention, interest, desire, action) it affects people around the globe? Maybe. However, I am sure, recent advertisment campaigns like the following picture of a billboard in Nairobi, Kenya contribute a lot to the economical boom – especially in places where people desperately try to improve their living standard and virtually stick to anything exotic to emphasise their progress on this.



So I was just trackbacking a google search request on kenya+referendum+blog I’d found in my site stats and landed on Ruud Elmendorp’s blog – a Dutch video journalist who has published some of his nice videos on his website. Among those featured videos, there’s one on Bertiers – that very special Kenyan "signboard artist" from Dagoretti, Nairobi, Kenya.


Some time ago I already blogged about other Kenyan artists like Shine Tani, Joel Oswaggo, Maube and Evanson Kangethe (in german, though) and was quite happy when Bwana Shine Tani himself commented on it two weeks ago. Yes, I like East African artists and I know there are even many more, many talented and unique artists that don’t need to sell their drawings at such a low price in order to be promoted and accepted by the western world. So, Thank You, Bwana Bertiers and Bwana Elmendorp for putting even more awareness of Contemporary African Art on the Internet. I think it’s about time my fellow Europeans realize there’s much more to African Art than just batics, wood carvings and Sisal Baskets ("kîondo"). Maybe one day soon I’ll be able to take more pictures so we could at least share them on flickr

Update: I just figured out the song Ruud uses as the intro background tune for this fine (but too short!) documentary: M’bilia Bel’s "Nakei Nairobi" … YEAH!


"If they announce the iPod video, I’m going to start videoblogging." [WeBreakStuff]

Does that mean we will have to wait for this iPod video to be released? What about mobile phones then? My Nokia 6230 already has the ability to play (3GP) videos. The downside? 1. picture quality, 2. an even smaller screen and (most importantly) 3. you know how long it takes to get the video on that damn phone/sd-card ? Yeah. iVlog® (®=JKE’s :-)

YES, and while I’m still thinking about Web2.0 and the future of all those nice things: what about a Flickr-styled website for videos instead of just pictures? (hint, hint :-) ….in any case, the future will be BETA! LOL (~flickr beta, google earth/rss/blogsearch/etc. beta, etc.)

Kiku’s Blogcasting Corporation (KBC)

canonxl2.jpg"So, tell us, how did you actually learn how to make those videos?" – "Well, I went to this website called and had a quick look at the VC2 survival guide, went to a shop, got a decent cam, a better mic, a tripod and a nice bag and …well, you know, I just let go, maaaan?!" – "Ah….is it that simple?" –
"Yeah of course, maaaan… I mean, look, many of us are of the so-called MTV generation and have been spoiled by sitcoms, so we kinda know what the viewers wanna see….you know?….we got the right timing it takes to make the point. …This is especially important if you just have 30 seconds for a spot. It’s all a matter of timing." – "Ah…and how did you promote your videos?" – "Simple. I started off with videoblogging in my blog and people would actually recommend to upload my stuff on So there I went, promoting my spots on the world wide web and only paying for my internet connection fees, no needs for an agent or somethin’…it’s so simple, I tell ya, you just get your gear together, point that damn cam at somethin’, edit the shots on your mac and upload them!" ——

 Fiction, dear readers, I am far far away from Vlogging or even making my own little film. Of course I wish to have some cash cow in my shamba that coughs up enough dough every morning, but till then, I’ll have to stick to my little Sanyo Xacti digicam and use it’s 30fps (at least!) movie function to produce short clips for this third-rated blog. One day.
In the meantime, I will enjoy good documentaries like the one on Wangari Maathai or another one on how to make fire in the wild (Kudos to afromusing for blogging about this the other day + Martin for giving me this nice hint!).

P.S.: And while you’re at it, please make sure not to miss out this video on a massacre which has taken place in Turbi/Marsabit. Or as MentalAcrobatics has put it the other day: "Show me; and I will remember."…