Bongo Barbershop

Director: Charlie Ahearn
Country: USA
Year: 2005
Running Time: 8 min
Language: English and Swahili


An East African MC, Balozi Dola, wanders into a Bronx barbershop on his pilgrimage to find “the real hip hop”. The barber, Flash’s original partner DJ Easy Mike calls out Grand Master Caz who spits a rhyme on how we are in the place of hip hop’s origins. Shop sweeper DOA adds vocal percussion to the mix and Balozi Dola rhymes back in his native African Swahili. Bongo is the Swahili expression for “Brain” used in local hip hop slang.

About the Director

Charlie Ahearn

CharlieahearnBiography: Wild Style directed by Charlie Ahearn was first screened in 1982 and went on to become the classic Hip Hop movie. After directing other films such as Fear of Fiction and artist documentaries Ahearn co-authored the book Yes Yes Y’all. Released in 2002, it was an oral history of the first decade of Hip Hop with many photos by Ahearn. Wild Style The Sampler by Ahearn was published in 2007 on the 25th anniversary of that movie. Ahearn has been producing documentaries such as Richard Hunt Sculptor 2010, Jamel Shabazz Street Photographer 2011 and Hip Hop musical shorts, his latest being All City Take It to the Bridge. Ahearn resides in New York City.


Films Shown in AFF, Inc. Programs:
Bongo Barbershop (2011).

The Deadly Art of Survival (1979);
Twins (1980);
New York City Hip Hop Convention (1980);
Wild Style (1982);
Doin’ Time in Times Square (1991);
Juanito (1991);
Kiki in the Flesh (1993);
Jane in Peep Land (1993);
Uber Frau (1994);
Simon at the Portal of Paradise (1996);
Martin Wong (1998);
Fear of Fiction (1999);
Leon Golub – To the Dogs (2003);
Bongo Barbershop (2005);
Busy on the Beach (2006);
Tom on B’Way (2006);
Brothers Fantastic (2007);
Revelers in Times Square (2008);
Busy on the Autobahn (2008);
Richard Hunt, Sculptor (2010);
All City Take It to the Bridge (2010);
Las Vegas Flip (2010);
Raymond at Daytop (2010);
Jamel Shabazz, Street Photographer (2011).