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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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Photo by KOLA SULAIMON/AFP via Getty Image

#EndSARS: 1 Year Later And It's Business As Usual For The Nigerian Government

Thousands filled the streets of Nigeria to remember those slain in The #LekkiTollGateMassacre...while the government insists it didn't happen.

This week marks 1 year since Nigerians began protests against police brutality and demanded an end to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). The #EndSARS protests took the world by storm as we witnessed Nigerian forces abuse, harass and murder those fighting for a free nation. Reports of illegal detention, profiling, extortion, and extrajudicial killings followed the special task force's existence, forcing the government to demolish the unit on October 11th, 2020. However, protestors remained angered and desperate to be heard. It wasn't until October 20th, when soldiers opened fire on demonstrators at Lekki tollgate in the country's capital, Lagos, that the protests came to a fatal end. More than 56 deaths from across the country were reported, while hundreds more were traumatized as the Nigerian government continued to rule by force. The incident sparked global outrage as the Nigerian army refused to acknowledge or admit to firing shots at unarmed protesters in the dead of night.

It's a year later, and nothing has changed.

Young Nigerians claim to still face unnecessary and violent interactions with the police and none of the demands towards systemic changes have been met. Fisayo Soyombo the founder of the Foundation for Investigative Journalism, told Al Jazeera, "Yes, there has not been any reform. Police brutality exists till today," while maintaining that his organization has reported "scores" of cases of police brutality over this past year.

During October 2020's protests, Nigerian authorities turned a blind eye and insisted that the youth-led movement was anti-government and intended to overthrow the administration of current President Muhammadu Buhari. During a press conference on Wednesday, in an attempt to discredit the protests, Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed hailed the Nigerian army and police forces for the role they played in the #EndSARS protests, going as far as to say that the Lekki Toll Massacre was a "phantom massacre with no bodies." These brazen claims came while protesters continued to gather in several major cities across the country. The minister even went on to shame CNN, Nigerian favorite DJ Switch as well as Amnesty International, for reporting deaths at Lekki. Mohammed pushed even further by saying, "The six soldiers and 37 policemen who died during the EndSARS protests are human beings with families, even though the human rights organizations and CNN simply ignored their deaths, choosing instead to trumpet a phantom massacre."

With the reports of abuse still coming out of the West African nation, an end to the struggle is not in sight. During Wednesday's protest, a journalist for the Daily Post was detained by Nigerian forces while covering the demonstrations.

According to the BBC, additional police units have been set up in the place of SARS, though some resurfacing SARS officers and allies claim to still be around.

Young Nigerians relied heavily on social media during the protests and returned this year to voice their opinions around the first anniversary of an experience that few will be lucky enough to forget.



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How CKay's 'Love Nwantiti' Became the World's Song

Nigerian singer and producer CKay talks to OkayAfrica about the rise of his international chart-topping single "Love Nwantiti," his genre-defying sound and the reasons behind this era of afrobeats dominance.