Music

The 8 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

The best songs that we came across this week, featuring Sarkodie & Runtown, The.Wav, Legendury Beatz, Sinkane and more.

At the end of every week, we highlight the creme of the crop in music and round up the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks throughout the last few days.


Check out the "Songs You Need to Hear This Week" in our new Apple Music curator playlist and read about the individual selections ahead.

Sarkodie and Runtown's "Pain Killer"

Fewer collabos could excite like one by Sarkodie and Runtown. Individually they command A-star ratings for quality and consistency and, as a tag-team, the result could only be magical.

“Pain Killer” is produced by T Spize, Runtown’s longterm collaborator, who made his first hit “Gallardo” as well as Davido‘s “Aye.” His beat for this banger is recognisably Ghanaian in how the percussion is syncopated and, even more pronounced, in the looped and slightly-pitched flute notes on the chorus. —Sabo Kpade.

Read our full review of "Pain Killer."

Afro-Trap collective The.Wav x Masterkraft

Afro-trap group The.Wav have a knack for writing songs that will soundtrack your weekends.

The L.A.-based collective links up with Nigerian producer Masterkraftwho's crafted hits for Flavour, Banky W and many others—for their new single "Proposition."

The new track, which we're premiering here today, blends elements of dancehall, afrobeats, and hip-hop into The.Wav's self-described "Afro-trap" sound.

Check it out "Proposition" below and grab it on Apple Music.

Check out the best songs of the week in our Apple Music playlist, updated every Friday:

Sinkane's Life & Livin' It

Life & Livin' It album cover photo by Shervin Lainez.

Sinkane's new album, Life & Livin' It, is out today. It's a much-needed dose of optimism.

‘Kulu shi tamaam’ is an Arabic phrase meaning ‘Everything is great!,” Gallab mentions. “Times are tough. Struggles have always existed in our lives. But hope, love and the power of positivity help us stay alive. It is what inspires me to wake up in the morning, make music, and, ultimately, connect with people.”

You should definitely check out and grab this album.

Legendury Beatz connect with Mr Eazi

Nigerian production duo Legendury Beatz, who've written hits for Wizkid, Wale, Tinie Tempah and many others, are readying the release of their star-studded Afropop 101 mixtape.

The tape will feature contributions from the likes of Wizkid, Timaya, Vanessa Mdee and Maleek Berry. "Hearbeat," the lead single from Afropop 101, sees the beat makers linking up with Mr Eazi for a head-nodding dancehall progression.

Check out the full track list for Legendury Beatz' new mixtape below, which is up for pre-order now.

Oumou Sangaré meets Tony Allen

Grammy Award-winning Malian singer Oumou Sangaré connects with afrobeat royalty and drumming legend Tony Allen for her new single "Yere Faga."

"Yere Faga" is the lead single from her upcoming album, Mogoya, which will be the singer's first material in 8 years.

“My music has never had this kind of arrangement and sound before. I’ve been totally in the tradition for years now so to get out of that and have a look around elsewhere was a total pleasure,” Oumou Sangaré mentions.

Stanley Enow's #PrayForMe

Cameroonian rapper Stanley Enow was inspired by the loss of his sister, Sylvie Enow, to write the bittersweet single "Pray For Me," a prelude to his second album which is due later this year.

The song's music video was filmed in Johannesburg, South Africa. Watch above to hear this "soulful trap tune," as Enow describes it.

Two new joints from Phyno, one with P-Square

Phyno dropped two new music videos for singles from his latest album Playmaker.

The first one, "Financial Woman," sees him joining forces with P-Square for a Clarence Peters-directed clip. The second single follows the difficulties of relationships and the bad decisions that can be made in "Mistakes."

Burna Boy's "Hallelujah"

And, finally, Burna Boy gives thanks for his blessings, his family, and for other artists like Shatta Wale and R2bees in his latest single "Hallelujah."

Wizkid at Gidi Fest 2018. Photo: Tej/Gidi Culture Festival.

The Significance Of Wizkid's Failure To Perform At Coachella

And what consequences this could have for future Nigerian and African music shows abroad.

Nigeria's Wizkid didn't perform at the 2018 edition of the Coachella Valley and Arts Festival. While leading musicians across genres from all parts of the world climbed the stages over two weekends to provide concert-goers a live experience of their art, Starboy was absent. He was booked, his name was announced in the line-up, and two slots, over two weekends were allocated for his set. But he missed his placement due to "his inability to get US visas" for his band members.

Wizkid didn't just miss this chance. Africa did. Due to the significance of the his set at such a global stage, the Afrobeats movement did. Everyone, from creators, through the facilitators of the art, down to the consumers, everyone missed out on a crucial chance to bring our music to a diverse audience, at arguably the biggest music festival in the world. The timing was right. Wizkid, due to strength of his art, and the efficacy of his deals, found himself as the anointed one from Africa to do that.

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The IAAF Says Caster Semenya Must Lower Her Testosterone Levels Or Compete in Longer Distances

A new controversial set of rules will affect Caster Semenya severely.

South African middle-distance athlete Caster Semenya might be forced to compete in longer distance dashes.

This comes after the International Association of Athletics Federation announced that this Thursday it will reveal new rules for athletes with hyperandrogenism (high levels of testosterone in the female body). The rules, according to a report by the Daily MailDaily Mail, will force Semenya to either take medication to reduce her naturally occurring testosterone levels or move to longer-distance events.

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Photo by Sabelo MKhabela.

11 South African Hip-Hop Songs About Weed

4/20 Special: Here are 11 South African songs to get high to.

You can't separate hip-hop and weed. Dr. Dre's debut album The Chronic was named after the herb and the likes of Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa and Quasimoto pretty much made careers off rapping about weed.

The tradition is alive wherever hip-hop exists. In South Africa, weed has been rapped about just as much as the aforementioned artists have. And according to Lord Quas on "America's Most Blunted" from the album Madvillainy, listening to music under the influence of weed makes it sound better.

"Listening to music while stoned is a whole new world. Most cannabis consumers report it second only to sex. And grass will change your musical habits, for the better."

In light of 4/20, we list some South African hip-hop songs, both old and new, about weed. If you're a smoker, these songs could come in handy for you today.

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