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The 13 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

The best music of the week featuring J Hus, Nasty C, AKA, and some throwback gems.

Every week, we highlight the cream of the crop in music through our Best Music of the Week column.

Here's our round up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks, which you can also check out in our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Follow OkayAfrica on Spotify and Apple Music to get immediate updates every week and read about some of our selections ahead.


Nasty C "Jungle" & "King" feat. A$AP Ferg

South African rapper Nasty C is gearing to release his sophomore album Strings and Bling. He just released two new singles today. One is titled "Jungle," and the other, which features A$AP Ferg, is titled "King." On both songs, Nasty C impresses with quotables and his ever-solid delivery.

Find out more and hear "Jungle" here.

J Hus 'Big Spang' EP

J Hus returns with his first release since 2017's Common Sense, and he does not disappoint. His latest, Big Spang—which he dropped last night—is a three-track rollout featuring the tracks "Dark Vader," "Scene" and "Dancing Man." It's brief, but offers a full listening experience nonetheless, with J Hus effortlessly switching up the production and flow with each transition.

Find out more.

Black Savage "Kothbiro" sampled in 'Ye'

Kanye West released his latest album, Ye, last Friday following a seemingly-unending and highly controversial build-up which culminated at a listening party session in Wyoming. A look at the album credits reveals that its second track, "Yikes," contains the use of lyrics and composition from Kenyan artists Ayub Ogada and James Mbarack Achieng.

Though they haven't spoken in 10 years, Ogada and Achieng were part of the 1970s Nairobi group Black Savage. Their vocal parts and melodies from the 1976 track "Kothbiro"are sampled in Kanye West's "Yikes." The two artists had no idea that they're music had been used in Ye.

Find out more.

Read: Kanye West's Album Title Has Unintentionally Boosted Burna Boy's 'Ye' Streams—We're Here For It

DJ Moma & Moniki's Afro-Brazilian Playlist

Everyday People's DJ Moma and Moniki put together this Afro-Baile playlist exclusively for OkayAfrica. It plays like perfect cross-Atlantic musical bridge between the afrobeats sounds of West Africa, the baile funk of Brazil and everything in between. "This playlist is inspired by the music that Moniki and I play consisting of African and Brazilian music which is our roots," Moma mentions to us about the selections.

Find out more.

Adekunle Gold "Fame"

Adekunle Gold's highly-anticipated sophomore album, About 30, just dropped last week. We've now got an exclusive for you from the album, the brand new music video for album highlight track, "Fame," which was written in 2017, his team tells us. "Adekunle often said writing is a form of catharsis for him and this song was born out of a feeling of being outwardly successful yet still not internally happy. The reward and the healing finally came with putting those words to paper and then melody."

Find out more.

AKA "StarSigns" feat. Stogie T

With just 10 days away from the release of Touch My Blood, his third (and last) studio album, AKA releases the visual for "Starsigns." The song, which features veteran rapper Stogie T, is one of the six songs from Touch My Blood which are currently available. "StarSigns" was releases in January and ruffled feathers because of the jab Stogie T throws at Cassper Nyovest and Riky Rick, and AKA's line about South African rappers sounding American.

Find out more.

Ko-Jo Cue & Shaker "Mama Yie"

The dynamic duo, Ko-Jo Cue & Shaker, return with a track that "focuses on portraying Ghana's colorful dance culture from various tribes," their label BBnz states. "It also bridges the gap between the cultural dances and the recent Afrobeats dance craze.Kpanlogo meets Azonto. Damba meets Mr Eazi's Akwaaba dance. Agbadza meets Shaku Shaku" Check it out above.

Remy Baggins & Eri Ife 'YLLW' EP

Remy Baggins is a 22-year-old singer and producer based in Lagos. Eri Ife is a fast-rising singer-songwriter from the afro-alternative scene. Their collaborative EP YLLW is a glorious illustration of what happened when these two Lagos prodigies finally linked up.

Find out more.

Sirens of Lesbos "We'll Be Fine"

Swiss born Sudanese-Eritrean sisters, Jasmina and Nabyla Serag, along with Arci Friede, Melvyn Buss and art director Denise Haeberli, are launching a diverse and fresh label named after their band, Sirens of Lesbos. The group christens the label with its new single, "We'll Be Fine," a soulful melodic pop experience that incorporates reggae beats with compelling lyrics that will induce island feels.

Find out more.

Bils "Loudah"

English rapper and producer, Giggz, collaborated with the Houston-based Nigerian artist, Bils, to create this hot new single. "Loudah" is an infusion of fresh afrobeats, catchy bars, rhythmic drums and dance-inducing emissions.

Find out more.

Kamal Keila "Taban Ahwak"

"Taban Ahwak," is yet another funky, jazzy, Sudanese-sound inspired track from Kamal Keila that must be heard. Habibi Funk Records is re-releasing another jewel from Kamal Keila's album, Muslims and Christians, and we're excited to be premiering it here for you to revel in with us.

Find out more.

AliThatDude 'Mood Ring' EP

South Africa-based Namibian AliThatDude just released his second EP, Mood Ring. The artist, who's one third of the Namibian hip-hop crew, Black Vulcanite, raps less and sings more when he's solo—And he's great at it.

Find out more.

Jupiter & Okwess "Nzele Momi"

Jupiter & Okwess is a Congolese group fronted by Kinshasa's Jupiter Bokondji. The afrofunk band is looking to take the DRC's musical heritage into modern times with their sophomore album, Kin Sonic, which features contributions from Damon Albarn of Blur/Gorillaz, and members of Nick Cave's Bad Seeds and Massive Attack. We premiered the band's psychedelic new music video for "Nzele Momi."

Find out more.

Follow OkayAfrica on Spotify and Apple Music to get immediate updates every week.

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Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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