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Hear the drums echoing tonight? They do in Namibia, an endless loop of Toto’s ‘Africa’

A 27-year-old artist in Namibia has set up a sound installation in an undisclosed location in the Namib Desert that is playing an endless loop of “Africa,” to “keep Toto going for all eternity.” (Twitter)
A 27-year-old artist in Namibia has set up a sound installation in an undisclosed location in the Namib Desert that is playing an endless loop of “Africa,” to “keep Toto going for all eternity.” (Twitter)

Let’s sing.

It’s gonna take a lot to take me away from you

There’s nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do

I bless the rains down in Africa

Gonna take some time to do the things we never had.

Now you have “Africa” by Toto stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

You’re welcome.

Now, imagine hearing it over and over and over and over again. For all eternity.

Nightmare or blessing?

Yes.

A Namibian artist named Max Siedentopf let that song get so deep in his head that in late December he set up a sound installation in the Namib Desert that is playing an endless loop of the song.

Yes, he put “Africa” in Africa. That was the point.

He hasn’t revealed the location of “Toto Forever,” described by the BBC as “six speakers attached to an MP3 player with the single track on it.”

The 27-year-old Siedentopf said he used solar batteries “to keep Toto going for all eternity,” though he has concerns about what the sands of time will do to it.

“Some (Namibians) love it and some say it’s probably the worst sound installation ever,” the artist told the BBC. “I think that’s a great compliment.”

CNET calls the installation’s seven pillars “Stone Henge-like ... a striking sight against its orange desert backdrop. The Namib Desert stretches for over 2,000 kilometres (around 1,200 miles), so good luck finding it without Siedentopf’s help.”

Siedentopf told Artnet News that even though the song came out in 1982, “it is still very much present in today’s pop culture and frequently used for memes — even entire Reddit pages are dedicated to the song.

”I’ve listened to the song over 400 times now and I still cannot say what makes it so enduring. It just hits the right nerves.”

He told the art news website that he had to be sly about setting up the installation.

“It’s hard to give permission in a vast landscape like that,” Siedentopf said. “The installation should work as a treasure that only the most loyal Toto fans can find.”

But he cautioned: “I would advise taking a lot of water along. The Namib is as big as the Netherlands and Switzerland combined, so it might take a while to find!”

Not to mention those wild dogs crying out in the night.

Ebony Patterson, of Jamaica, used an abandoned hydrotherapy pool for children in Swope Park, and transformed the site into a memorial for those who suffered from incurable ailments in the years before penicillin was developed.

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