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Runtown 'Tradition' EP.

The 10 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Runtown, Mr Eazi x Legendury Beatz, Shekhinah x DJ Lag, Skepta, Walshy Fire x Ice Prince and more.

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 our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

Check out all of OkayAfrica's new playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.


Runtown 'Tradition' EP

Nigerian star hitmaker Runtown is surprise released his latest EP, Tradition, last Friday. Tradition features five new song alongside the previously released "Unleash," a collaboration with UK grime act Fekky. The EP features production from Del B ("Redemption," "Unleash"), Spellz ("Emotions," "International Badman Killa"), Elputo ("Tradition") and Ransom Beatz ("Goose Bumps"). Overall, Tradition looks to bring the hazy & downtempo sonic world of Runtown's addictive hits like "Mad Over You" and "For Life" to higher levels.

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Legendury Beatz x Mr Eazi 'Zanku Leg Riddim'

The zanku is the dance of the moment, and with that comes several beats and "riddims" catered for the intricate dance. Mr Eazi and popular producer Legendury Beatz are the latest Nigerian artists to offer a song tailor-made to hit the zanku to. On their new project "Zanku Leg Riddim" the musicians share 3 versions of the core track "Zanku Leg." Mr Eazi is joined on Mr Real on the first iteration of the song, and Zlatan on the second. The third version is a pure instrumental, allowing for Legendury's production to shine on its own.

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DJ LAG & Shekhinah 'Anywhere We Go'

"Anywhere We Go" is DJ LAG and Shekhinah's new single. The collaboration between two of Durban's top musicians, sees Shekhinah lay her ethereal vocals over a bass-heavy house instrumental by one of the pioneers of gqom. The accompanying visuals, which were powered by adidas, feature a dancer (Thami Njoko), who glistens as he shares his acrobatic moves in an open space at night, which is in line with the adidas sneaker the video is essentially an ad for. The video was directed by veteran music video director Kyle Lewis.

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Walshy Fire, Ice Prince & Demarco 'Round Of Applause'

Walshy Fire is readying the release of his new record, Abeng, which aims to be a conversation between the Caribbean and Africa, featuring some of the biggest names across the dancehall and afro-fusion scenes.The Major Lazer DJ/producer shared his latest drop, "Round Of Applause," featuring Nigerian heavyweight rapper Ice Prince and Jamaica's Demarco The single is a sun-tinged production that blends deep dancehall synths with Ice Prince and Demarco's addictive vocals about a girl that looks so good she, well, deserves a round of applause.

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Skepta 'Bullet From A Gun'

Skepta drops the music video for "Bullet From a Gun," the first single from his highly-anticipated forthcoming album Ignorance is Bliss. After dropping "Bullet From a Gun" earlier this month—along with the track "Greaze Mode"—The British-Nigerian rapper has given the pensive, self-produced track a video that fits its serious mood. The nearly 3-minute clip, sees the artist sitting at a bench in London's Camden Station with his newly-born daughter's stroller next to him, during what seems like a typical day in London. He sits quietly and raps along to the lyrics as various characters pass him, and stop to sit at the bench as they go about their days.

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The Busy Twist Remix 1970s Angolan Tracks

About 10 years ago, Analog Africa released their initial Angola Soundtrack, a compilation of gems from late '60s and early '70s Luanda. Now, those songs are getting new life courtesy of London-based production duo The Busy Twist. These psychedelic Angolan guitars and rhythms get revisited in London Luanda Remix Series, a new 4-track release that sees the UK producers digging into the original Analog Africa archives and injecting these throwback sounds with new percussive energy.

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Emtee 'Smogolo' feat. Snymaan

"Smogolo" is Emtee's first single of 2019. The artist last released the music video for "Abantu," a song from his EP DIY 2, which came out last year. "Smogolo" features little to no rapping, as the artist sings throughout. The song is produced by Kreazo, who produced a large amount of DIY 2, and it features Snyman, who also appeared on DIY 2, most notably on "Abantu." This is a quintessential ATM (African trap music) song, as it blends genres such as trap, Afropop and a bit of mbhaqanga and maskandi.

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Skiibii, Falz, Teni, DJ Neptune 'Daz How Star Do'

One of Teni the Entertainer's comedic catch phrases has been turned into an infectious new track by Nigerian artist Skiibii—and we're here for it. "Daz How Star Do" is a Jaysynths Beatz-produced track featuring Teni herself as well as Nigerian rapperFalz and DJ Neptune. On "Daz How Star Do" Skiibii, Falz and Teni all spit a humorous and animated lines about their star power. "If you're not talking money please don't call me for a show," rhymes Skiibii on the song's catchy chorus.

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Kwesta 'Khethile Khethile' ft. Makwa, Tshego AMG & Thee Legacy

Kwesta's latest music video is a highlights video for his and wife Yolanda Vilakazi's wedding, which took place in March. The clip covers the goings on of both the couple's white and traditional wedding, and shows the guests who attended. The visuals were directed by K-Zaka, and they accompany, "Khethile Khethile," a song in which Kwesta expresses his love for his significant other.

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Jinmi Abduls 'Abena'

The wait is finally over for many Jinmi Abduls fans. The Lagos singer has finally dropped his much anticipated single "Abena" and it's a definite banger. This summery-sounding Ghanaian-inspired record is all about celebrating the beauty of the Black woman.

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Follow our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.


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Artwork: Barthélémy Toguo Lockdown Selfportrait 10, 2020. Courtesy Galerie Lelong & Co

1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair Goes to Paris in 2021

The longstanding celebration of African art will be hosted by Parisian hot spot Christie's for the first time ever.

In admittedly unideal circumstances, 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair will be touching French soil in 2021. The internationally celebrated art fair devoted to contemporary art from Africa and the African diaspora will be hosted in Paris, France from January 20 - 23. With COVID-19 still having its way around the globe, finding new ways to connect is what it's all about and 1-54 is certainly taking the innovative steps to keep African art alive and well.
In partnership with Christie's, the in-person exhibits will take place at the auction house's city HQ at Avenue Matignon, while 20 international exhibitors will be featured online at Christies.com. And the fun doesn't stop there as the collaboration has brought in new ways to admire the talent from participating galleries from across Africa and Europe. The fair's multi-disciplinary program of talks, screenings, performances, workshops, and readings are set to excite and entice revelers.

Artwork: Delphine Desane Deep Sorrow, 2020. Courtesy Luce Gallery


The tech dependant program, curated by Le 18, a multi-disciplinary art space in Marrakech medina, will see events take place during the Parisian run fair, followed by more throughout February.
This year's 1-54 online will be accessible to global visitors virtually, following the success of the 2019's fair in New York City and London in 2020. In the wake of COVID-19 related regulations and public guidelines, 1-54 in collaboration with Christie's Paris is in compliance with all national regulations, strict sanitary measures, and security.

Artwork: Cristiano Mongovo Murmurantes Acrilico Sobre Tela 190x200cm 2019


1-54 founding director Touria El Glaoui commented, "Whilst we're sad not to be able to go ahead with the fourth edition of 1-54 Marrakech in February as hoped, we are incredibly excited to have the opportunity to be in Paris this January with our first-ever fair on French soil thanks to our dedicated partners Christie's. 1-54's vision has always been to promote vibrant and dynamic contemporary art from a diverse set of African perspectives and bring it to new audiences, and what better way of doing so than to launch an edition somewhere completely new. Thanks to the special Season of African Culture in France, 2021 is already set to be a great year for African art in the country so we are excited to be playing our part and look forward, all being well, to welcoming our French friends to Christie's and many more from around the world to our online fair in January."

Julien Pradels, General Director of Christie's France, said, "Christie's is delighted to announce our second collaboration with 1-54, the Contemporary African Art Fair, following a successful edition in London this October. Paris, with its strong links to the continent, is a perfect place for such a project and the additional context of the delayed Saison Africa 2020 makes this partnership all the more special. We hope this collaboration will prove a meaningful platform for the vibrant African art scene and we are confident that collectors will be as enthusiastic to see the works presented, as we are."


Artwork: Kwesi Botchway Metamorphose in July, 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Gallery 1957


Here's a list of participating galleries to be on the lookout for:

Galleries

31 PROJECT (Paris, France)
50 Golborne (London, United Kingdom)
Dominique Fiat (Paris, France)
Galerie 127 (Marrakech, Morocco)
Galerie Anne de Villepoix (Paris, France)
Galerie Cécile Fakhoury (Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire/ Dakar, Senegal)
Galerie Eric Dupont (Paris, France)
Galerie Lelong & Co. (Paris, France / New York, USA)
Galerie Nathalie Obadia (Paris, France / Brussels, Belgium)
Galleria Continua (Beijing, China / Havana, Cuba / Les Moulins, France / San Gimignano, Italy / Rome, Italy)
Gallery 1957 (Accra, Ghana / London, United Kingdom)
Loft Art Gallery (Casablanca, Morocco)

Luce Gallery (Turin, Italy)
MAGNIN-A (Paris, France)
Nil Gallery (Paris, France)
POLARTICS (Lagos, Nigeria)
SEPTIEME Gallery (Paris, France)
This is Not a White Cube (Luanda, Angola) THK Gallery (Cape Town, South Africa) Wilde (Geneva, Switzerland)

For more info visit 1-54

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Listen to Sibusile Xaba‘s New Jazz Single 'Umdali'

Sibusile Xaba's single 'Umdali' featuring Naftali and Fakazile Nkosi comes ahead of Brownswood Recording's highly-anticipated contemporary jazz compilation album 'Indaba Is'.