Sundays 8pm to 11pm on Radio 2
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Angelique Kidjo has lived on three continents and recorded and performed with the likes of Alicia Keys, Josh Groban and Bono. And yet, this woman who The Guardian has named one of the world’s most inspiring people, has kept her heart (if not her feet) planted firmly in the soil of the small West African republic of Benin. It was there that she first heard the music of Curtis Mayfield, Aretha Franklin and James Brown. Ridiculed as a teen for wanting to be a singer and unwilling to sing songs in praise of Benin’s communist regime, Angelique fled the country for France where she cemented her reputation as one of Africa’s most iconic artists. She’s also been an activist as an ambassador for UNICEF campaigns across the continent for the rights of girls and women. It’s no wonder her new book is called Spirit Rising.