Artists You Should Know: Haitian Punk Rock from Moonlight Benjamin, Stream New Single “Bafon”

Moonlight Benjamin

Haitian-born, France-based artist Moonlight Benjamin has shared a new single “Bafon” from her upcoming new album Wayo that’s slated for release this March. On it she narrates a tale created to highlight her own complicated feelings about her home country, which laments at its state but also refuses to be anything but triumphant in emotion.


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In her new song “Bafon,” that aura radiates brilliantly from every blistering guitar, concussive drum, and tireless wail that echoes within. It’s a song that both weeps and celebrates, is riddled with pain as well as healing, and rallies against the once perceived death of something still incessantly living. For Benjamin the song represents all her coalesced feelings for Haiti, a place filled with moments and people that still inspire her deeply.

Over the course of her career Benjamin has found a wealth of inspiration in her Haitian roots, not just musically but thematically and spiritually as well. And she mingles her earnest desire to champion that cultural identity with a fascination for vodou — which she describes as a “culture of tolerance and resistance” — and love of modern rock icons like David Bowie and Freddie Mercury. Giving it an enigmatic aura that’s as much owed to her clamorously melodic melodies as it is to her vindicating cries.


It was in Haiti where Benjamin was adopted and raised by kind strangers, discovered the healing and transformative power of music, where she first pursued a life making music alongside other Haitian artists, and where she eventually left to broaden her own horizons. “Bafon” expresses beautifully, rapturously, all of the artist’s hope for Haiti. It represents a crucial piece of her artistry, one of many that will be explored on her upcoming album Wayo. In the interim be sure to wander through the rest of Benjamin’s alluring discography, including her last album Simido.

“‘Bafon’ is about Haïti,” Benjamin explained. “My country of origin grips me, and what happens there leaves me crying. The song is a metaphor, it evokes the burial and the end of Haiti, as if it is a person. Arriving at the cemetery nobody wants this death, until they’re dead themselves. The guardian of the cemetery, the master of the dead Baron Samedi, declares that he does not have the green light from master Kafou, who opposes him and affirms that no, Haiti is not dead that she still carries life in her! It is a message of hope about my country!”

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Visit Moonlight Benjamin on their website, Twitter, and Instagram to stay updated on new releases and tour announcements.

Words by Steven Ward

Listen to “Bafon” the new single from Moonlight Benjamin below!

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