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Audio: Black Ph03nix Samples Margaret Thatcher In 'News Of A World'

Black Ph03nix, alter ego of Larry Achiampong releases new track, 'News of a World' as a part of his new Phoenix Rising project.


If the name Black Ph03nix isn't immediately ringing a bell, perhaps its because it is the alter ego of Larry Achiampong — and if you're not familiar by now, we'll help you out anyway. Achiampong is the London-based producer behind the excellent Meh Mogya and More Mogya series of LPs that drew upon the Ghanaian rhythms of Achiampong's parents music growing up, chopping up the vintage highlife records of his youth to dope effect. The music being released under Achiampong's Black Ph03nix moniker represents the next phase of the project, this time finding Larry cooking up tracks from the other various sounds that shaped his childhood, including the news, video games, and films that have seeped into his subconsciousness over time. Entitled Phoenix Rising: Unfinished Business, this continuation of Achiampong's exploration of his personal musical sound scape is commissioned by basic.fm, where you can find a deeper explanation of the whole project. "News of a World" is one of the Phoenix Rising tracks, and features audio samples from recently passed Margaret "Megatron" Thatcher and Neil "Optimus Prime" Kinnock (nicknames conferred by the Black Ph03nix himself) and is giving us a Madlib feel that's straight dopeness. Check out "News of a World" below and stay tuned for more on the Phoenix Rising project.

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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