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Santi. Image courtesy of the artist.

The 12 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

The best music of the week featuring Santi, Yugen Blakrok, Wizkid, Skepta, Runtown x Nasty C, 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 OkayAfrica on Spotify and Apple Music to get immediate updates every week and read about some of our selections ahead.


Santi 'Rapid Fire' feat. Shane Eagle & Amaarae

After captivating audiences with "Freaky" in August, Santi is back and he's lighting up the dance floor yet again with his newest single, Rapid Fire. Santi brings back early 2000's dancehall vibes with his swift delivery on this wavy Genio Bambino-produced beat. He also enlists fellow alté scenester Amaarae and South African emcee Shane Eagle to complete this endlessly-playable track.

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Yugen Blakrok 'Carbon Form' 

About two weeks ago, South African rapper Yugen Blakrok released her first single in five years, following her debut album, 2013's Return of the Astrogoth. The new single, titled "Carbon Form," is the first single to her upcoming follow-up album, Anima Mysterium. The music video shows Yugen Blakrok owning the different spaces she occupies, with subtle yet effective effects.

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Skepta 'Pure Water'

Skepta has released the long-awaited music video for his single "Pure Water," his first official single of 2018 which he released back in May. The grime rapper teased the music video with an Instagram post of him in a tub surrounded by a group of fierce women back in June, and now the self-directed music video has arrived. In some of the more striking scenes, the rapper performs while surrounded by a group of sharply dressed women, who appear to be channeling the Fela Kuti Queens. Skepta himself dons Fela Kuti style face paint throughout the video as well.

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Wizkid x Metro Boomin featuring J Balvin, Swae Lee, Offset

Wizkid revealed that he was working on new music with the "Bad & Boujee" producer back in July. On the Swae Lee (of Rae Sremmurd) led song "Borrowed Love," Wizkid provides a memorable verse about halfway through, as the two sing about a sad breakup. "Only You" sees Wizkid taking the reigns, opening the song with a verse about to the girl. Migos rapper Offset joins in the second verse, and Colombian reggeaton singer J Balvin joins in later, delivering sultry lyrics sung in Spanish. They make for a pretty infectious trio.

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Runtown & Nasty C 'No Permission'

Runtown and Nasty C come through with a new collaboration track that'll jump start your week. 'No Permission" sees the Nigerian artist and South African rapper trading rapid fire bars over an ominous, trap-inspired beat. It's a heavyweight-meets-heavyweight link up that's sure to get a lot of play in this last quarter of the year. The track comes accompanied with a pink-tinted new music video, directed by Director Teekay.

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Mimi Mars 'Kodoo'

Mimi Mars is one of the buzzing names coming out of Tanzania's music scene, which the likes of her sister, Vanessa Mdee, and superstar Diamond Platnumz have helped establish as East Africa's musical powerhouse. The Dar es Salaam singer now comes through with "Kodoo," a highly-addictive new single that you'll surely have on repeat.

"Kodoo" is available now

Bongo Maffin 'Harare'

Legendary South African kwaito group Bongo Maffin have a new single. Titled "Harare," the single is vintage Bongo Maffin, but doesn't sound dated. Thandiswa's layered vocals, Stoan's Tswana poetry, Apple Seed's ragga raps and Speedy's R&B-inspired; vocals all coexist in harmony over a bass-heavy beat built on skittering drums. The last time the diverse quartet released new music was with their 2005 album New Construction which had the hit "More Fire."

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Kesswa 'To Find' 

Nigerian-American singer Kesswa's "To Find" is an alluring blend of soulful vocals with ambient, drum and bass production work. The song's accompanying music video, directed by Kai Dowridge, was inspired by Oshun, goddess of strength, beauty and femininity. It's well worth a watch.

"To Find" is available now

DJ Spinall 'Omoge' feat. Dotman

Nigeria's DJ Spinall dropped his fourth studio album, Iyanu, just under two weeks ago. The 10-track record is packed with features from some of the biggest names in the game like Wizkid, Davido, Tekno, Burna Boy, and Kizz Daniel, as well as newcomers WurlD and Nonso Amadi. Spinall, who's already scored some big hits off Iyanu with "Nowo" and "Baba," is now sharing the latest music video from the album for "Omoge."

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Bantu 'Ká Máa Dúpé'

Bantu is a Lagos-based 13-piece band whose music straddles genres such as afrobeat, hip-hop, afrofunk, highlife and Yoruba music. The group's latest album Agberos International—"Agbero" is Yoruba slang for public vehicle conductor—was released last year. We now get the new visual for "Ká Máa Dúpẹ́," one of the clear highlights from that record.

Agberos International is available now

Rah Sosa 'SMAT (Send Me A Text)

Rah Sosa rolls through on a trap-meets-electronic beat with his latest single "SMAT (Send Me A Text)," in which he talks about times with his girl and, as implied in the title, not being too fond of phone calls.

"SMAT" is available now

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




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The 12 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Adekunle Gold, EL x Joey B x Falz, Tiwa Savage, Tshegue, Afro B, Davido 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.

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Music
Cover of Mariam Makeba's album 'A Promise' and Lady Donli's 'Classic'

Sample Chief, a Go-To Platform for African Music Knowledge, Share 5 of Their Favorite Samples

From highlighting vintage Guinean records in rap songs to Nollywood references in afropop, Sample Chief wants to be an "all-knowing wizard" that "shares African music intelligence on a deeper level."

Samples are the foundation of just about all of our favorite songs whether we know them or not. For music lovers, discovering a rare song within a song can feel like stumbling upon a gem, leaving us to wonder what other musical treasures lie hidden in the songs we listen to regularly. Sample Chief is the digital platform dedicated to helping music nerds find these rare cuts by unearthing the African sounds at the heart of contemporary African music and other genres.

From rare Cameroonian-Nigerian samples on Tyler the Creator's Igor, to samples and interpolations of Nollywood movies in today's African pop, the primarily Instagram, Twitter and YouTube-based platform aims to be an "all-knowing wizard" that "shares African music intelligence on a deeper level," says Sample Chief's founder Ore Sami-Orungbe.

Sami-Orungbe, a Toronto-based student and DJ who runs Sample Chief with his business partner Sandrine Somé, decided to create the page after realizing that there were no solid outlets to go to for the discovery of samples both in and of African music. "I was on a plane listening to 'Sicker' by Niniola and thinking, 'there's a huge sample on it, (she samples "Alaye" by L.K.T) but is there a database I could go to if I feel like I've heard a song before and want to know where the sample came from? There wasn't. So I thought maybe I should fill the void." He adds that with Sample Chief, the goal is to "be a platform that brings a community of users together and opens up a space where they can share their knowledge of African music. We break down songs and highlight the influences, the samples, interpolations, and the references behind it."

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Still from Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim's TED Talk

Watch Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim's  TED Talk on How Indigenous Knowledge Can Help Fight Climate Change

The Chadian activist—and one of OkayAfrica's 100 Women 2020—says traditional knowledge, as practiced in her native Mbororo community, is one of the keys to combatting climate change.

In a new TED Talk, climate activist, geographer and one of OkayAfrica's 100 Women 2020, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, discusses the role that indigenous knowledge can play in combatting climate change.

During the 13-minute talk, Ibrahim emphasizes how the exploration and acceptance of various knowledge systems–including those that fall outside of the scope of typical scientific research–can add to our understanding of ways to protect the environment. "I think, if we put together all the knowledge systems that we have -- science, technology, traditional knowledge -- we can give the best of us to protect our peoples, to protect our planet, to restore the ecosystem that we are losing," says Ibrahim.

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Photo by Gallo Images/Brenton Geach.

South Africans Condemn Police Brutality During National Lockdown

A number of videos have emerged on social media allegedly showing the intimidation and assault of several Black South Africans by law enforcement.

South Africa recently began a nationwide lockdown in an effort to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has been deployed across the nation to aid the police in ensuring that the rules of the lockdown are upheld. However, disturbing footage has emerged on social media allegedly depicting law enforcement agents assaulting Black South Africans.

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