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Still from "Yaji" video (Youtube)

The 14 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Bas x Shane Eagle, Yemi Alade, Burna Boy x Dave, K.O, Falana, 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.


Yemi Alade 'Yaji' feat. Slimcase & Brainee

Yemi Alade's latest single, "Yaji," is an undeniable banger. From its massive guitar-lick-driven beat to the Slimcase and Brainee features, the song will undoubtedly be soundtracking a lot of nights and dance floors. Well, the star singer has just released the new video for "Yaji," which once again solidifies her spot as the Nigerian queen of music videos. The new dance-packed video stars off with Yemi blowing up a car, which is fair indication of how fiery and lively the rest of the gets. It was directed by Mr. C.

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Bas x Shane Eagle 'Ap3x (Remastered)'

"Ap3X," a song from Shane Eagle's EP Never Grow Up, released in December, just got a remix. The song, which is less than three minutes long and is titled "Ap3X (Remastered)," sees new verses from Dreamville MC Bas and Shane Eagle over the jazzy key-laden instrumental. Both MCs spit standout verses that touch on their success, their travel adventures and how rappers can't sound like them, among other topics. Bas is on his Milky Way European tour, which Shane Eagle will be joining for a number of dates in France, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Germany and a few more.

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K.O 'Supa Dupa'

South African rapper K.O has been quiet since he released a 2-track EP, 2018's Two PieceTwo Piece, which featured Cassper Nyovest and AKA. He appeared on DJ Maphorisa's summer hit "Walk Yephara," but he hasn't released new music since June. On "Supa Dupa," Mr Cashtime raps about the plenty of snakes he has encountered in the game while pythons entangle themselves on his torso and limbs. He also reminds you that he's always supa dupa cleans when he pulls up.

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Falana 'Repeat'

Nigeria's own Falana continues to push powerful messages through her music and visuals—this time with "Repeat," the second single that's to come from her highly-anticipated EP, Chapter One. Falana explains to Hunger Magazine that the track digs deep into the commonalities of the human experience in our world (where change is a constant) and our need for community, spirituality and love. Directed by Hanna Raschl-McRonald with styling by Yomi Adefala, "Repeat" is a stunning ode to resilience, resistance and faith.

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Davido x DJ Neptune 'Démo'

Award-winning Nigerian artist DJ Neptune has enlisted Davido for his first official single of the year, "Dèmo.' The upbeat love song sees Davido singing enthusiastically about a woman that has caught his eye, as usual, over production from SperaochBeatz. The track doesn't stray far from typical Naija pop, but is still worth the listen, as it's a definite party-starter.

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Shekhinah x Wandile Mbambeni 'Wanted and Love'

Rising South African soul singer Wandile Mbambeni's new single "Wanted and Loved" features Shekhinah. The song is about wanting to be desired and loved. "Wanted and Loved" blends soul and R&B;, and merges two unique artists' traits. The acoustic guitar co-exists with buzzing synthesizers to create an atmosphere that's accommodative of the two singers.

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Burna Boy x Dave 'Location'

Burna Boy refuses to get off of our necks in 2019, and honestly we're not complaining. After dropping several dope collaborations in the first quarter of the year, the artist is back with his latest, and it's one of our favorites so far. The Nigerian artist links up with British rapper Dave for the chilled-out "Location," from the MC's debut album Psychodrama, which has received rave reviews.

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Odunsi x Raye 'Tipsy'

Odunsi drops the hotly-anticipated music video for 'Tipsy," The buzzing Nigerian artist's single sees him linking up with London singer RAYE over a alluring synths and minimal beat work. In the song, the artists play two sides of a story about drunken seduction as they call and text each other while out on the town.

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Santi 'Sparky'

Santi's on a bit of a roll, following-up the success of "Rapid Fire" with his new single "Sparky," which dropped a few weeks ago. The hazy and addictive new track, which was produced by Odunsi The Engine and Le Mav, now gets the visual treatment in the form of a striking, self-directed music video. The new video for "Sparky" cycles through the loss of someone and the many emotions that come from it: anger, despair, grief and ultimately, in this video, violence.

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Ssue x Teddy Ossei 'Fire! Fire! Fire!'

Ghana's Ssue comes through with a heavy dose of addictive vocals and percussion in her new single, "Fire! Fire! Fire!" The song sees the singer-songwriter connecting with Teddy Ossei of Osibisa for a dance floor-ready afropop banger that also serves as a warning. Don't get burned and listened to the new single above.

"Fire! Fire! Fire!" is available everywhere now.

Becca x Ycee 'Magic'

Becca, the voice behind one of the best Ghanaian songs of last year, comes through with the new music video for "Magic." The new track and video see the Ghanaian star singer connecting with Nigeria's Ycee for an earworm of a romantic track produced by Adey.

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Rowlene x Gemini Major 'Runaway'

South African RnB singer Rowlene's new music video for "Runaway," featuring artist and producer Gemini Major, is a celebration of love. And what's more fitting than colorful walls as backdrops and dancing under the sun in Cape Town to celebrate a jolly relationship? "Runaway" is the latest single from Rowlene's 2018 project The Evolution Of a Robot: 2nd Generation, released under Nasty C's Tall Rack Records, which Rowlene is signed to.

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Dexter Story 'Electric Gurage'

L.A.-based producer Dexter Story's new album, Bahir, is set to feature influences from Ethio-jazz tonalities, Tuareg desert rock, funk, Somalian soul and much more. It's set to feature the likes of Sudan Archives, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, and others. Get a taste of the album, dropping March 15, in "Electric Gurage," a trot-paced excursion into a bouncing groove.

Mbakara x DJ Chicken 'Pata Logo Benz'

Get into Mbakara and DJ Chicken's booming hip-hop track "Pata Logo Benz," which is available on all platforms now.

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



Music
Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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