Africa is celebrating 50 years since the year when a large swathe of African countries gained their independence. 1960 was a dramatic turning point in the continent’s history, triggering massive political and social change. Music benefited substantially from the changes, with independence providing the inspiration for an astonishing burst of creativity. New musical genres were created, while governments committed themselves to supporting musical development. The result was a cultural explosion that saw Africa finally taking its rightful place on the international music scene.