Amaarae in "Jumping Ship"

The 9 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Amaarae, Mr Eazi, Kid Tini, Stonebwoy, Tekno, Blinky Bill 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 playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Amaarae 'JUMPING SHIP' ft Kojey Radical & Cruel Santino

Amaarae's 14-track debut, The Angel You Don't Know, is an album you can't miss. The Ghanaian-American artist is a longtime favorite of ours, having been named in OkayAfrica's 100 Women earlier this year and penning op-eds for us. In The Angel You Don't Know, she presents an alluring and dreamlike trip trough a modern mash-up of R&B, pop, afro-fusion and much more. Throughout the record, Amaarae is joined by features from the likes of Kojey Radical, Cruel Santino, Odunsi (The Engine), KZ, Princess Adjua, Moliy, and Maesu.

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Tega Starr & Mr Eazi 'French Kiss'

Nigeria's Tega Starr is back on our screens and in our hearts with new visuals for his hit single, "French Kiss." In collaboration with Mr Eazi and South African production powerhouse Master KG, "French Kiss" is Starr's first track since joining the collective, and we are more than excited to hear what he has coming next. Production credits also go to Nigeria's Magic Sticks.

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Kid Tini 'Amen' ft. Sbahle

In his single, "Amen," Kid Tini is preaching. The lyricist muses about the evils of the world, but is quick to preach hope. That's before Sbahle busts into song followed by church keys and a pitched vocal sample, the work of two masters—producers Tweezy and Kreazoe, who work closely with Ambitiouz Entertainment. Sbahle is signed to Umuthi Records, a label owned by the duo Blaq Diamond, who are themselves signed to Ambitiouz Entertainment.

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Tekno 'Enjoy'

Nigerian star Tekno rolls through with his latest single "Enjoy," a lighthearted and carefree concoction produced by Blaise Beats. The track sees Tekno asking, "allow me to enjoy myself," and the guitars and beat work match that sentiment. Be on the lookout for his upcoming album Old Romance.

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Blinky Bill 'Bado Mapema (Simama)'

Kenya's Blinky Bill returns in strong form with the new single and music video for "Bado Mapema (Simama)." The addictive and energetic new track, which features Kasiva Mutua on percussion, is the first taste we get from his upcoming We Cut Keys 2 EP. Watch the CJ Pixels-directed music video above.

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Killbeatz, Ofori Amponsah & King Promise 'Odo Nti'

"Odo Nti" is the highlight track from Ghanaian producer Killbeatz' Love and Happiness EP, a joint effort with King Promise and Ofori Amponsah. The soothing, low-tempo tune is now getting the music video treatment in the form of this mansion clip. Watch above.

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Boddhi Satva, Preto Show, Stonebwoy, Tenny 'Ragga Ragga'

Central African Republic's Boddhi Satva comes throuigh with a dancehall-inspired single in the shape of "Ragga Ragga." The lively new tune features the noteworthy line-up of Ghana's Stonebwoy, Angola's Preto Show, and Central African/Lebanese Tenny on the chorus. Get into it above.

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Rowlene '11:11'

Rowlene fans who have been manifesting for the release of her debut album—and their wishes have been granted. The project is finally here. The long-awaited 12-track album comes after the recently released singles, "Stop," "Sunday Morning," and "Hypnotise," which have helped build anticipation for 11:11. Known mostly for her features, the The Tall Racks Records singer-songwriter has expressed how she wanted to keep the features to a minimum in her debut LP; only enlisting Nonso Amadi, Manana, Omari Hardwick and her label boss and frequent collaborator Nasty C.

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Gemini Major 'Action Figure' feat. AKA

Gemini Major has started off the weekend on a banging note with single release "Action Figure" featuring AKA. This song comes from Gemini Major's much anticipated EP, Slum Kid. When AKA and Gemini Major collaborate hits are made and "Action Figure" is no different. "Action Figure" will have hip-hop heads bobbing and swaying till early morning. Gemini Major brings in a dancehall feel to the song and AKA, of course, just lands it with his sick raps. The track is yet another sample evidence of Gemini Major's good ear for beats.

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

News Brief
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Six Things History Will Remember Kenneth Kaunda For

News of Kenneth David Kaunda's passing, at age 97, has reverberated across the globe. Kaunda, affectionately known as KK, was Zambia's first President from 1964 to 1991.

Following Nelson Mandela's passing in December 2013, Kenneth Kaunda became Africa's last standing hero. Now with his passing on Thursday, June 17 — after being admitted to the Maina Soko Military Hospital in Lusaka earlier in the week — this signals the end of Africa's liberation history chapter.

It is tempting to make saints out of the departed. The former Zambian struggle hero did many great things. He was, after all, one of the giants of the continent's struggle against colonialism. Ultimately however, he was a human being. And as with all humans, he lived a complicated and colourful life.

Here are six facts you might not have known about him.

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