Featuring Davido, Kwesta, Mulatu Astatke, Bella Alubo, Hugh Masekela 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.
DMW 'Mafa Mafa' feat. Davido, The Flowolf, Peruzzi & Dremo
Davido, Peruzzi, Dremo and The Flowolf dropped the track "Mafa Mafa" a few months back. The Nigerian artists have now released the accompanying visuals for the collaborative track which was produced by Davido's DMW record label. "Mafa Mafa" is the first official single of the year from DMW. The song sees the artists dropping rap verses back and forth in Yoruba with "Mafa" loosely translating to "Don't pull it." Produced by the talented Nakademus and directed by Director Q, the music video itself is a straightforward one that sees the artists doing their thing and having a ton of fun while they're at it.
Big Zulu 'Ama Million Remix' feat. Kwesta ,YoungstaCPT, MusiholiQ & Zakwe
Earlier this year, Big Zulu released the remix to his 2019 Cassper Nyovest-assisted single "Ama Million." Today, the rapper from the KZN province, shared the visuals for the remix which features Kwesta, YoungstaCPT, Zakwe and Musiholiq who sings the hook. Sticking to the song's concept of dripping like a millionaire, the music video showcases the rappers' personal style sense. Big Zulu sticks to his trademark Zulu look which is characterized by Brentwood pants, Omega sandals and thin gold chains. Zakwe spots the same look, but with fitting subtlety.
Bella Alubo 'Loneliest Girl in the World'
Bella Alubo comes through with the perfect quarantine jam in the shape of "Loneliest Girl in the World," the lead single from Red Hot's upcoming compilation Kele•le. The new compilation "aims to empower young female artists to lead the conversation around the artist's response to COVID-19 in the Global South," a press statement explains. The animated video for "Loneliest Girl in the World" is a captivating experience that follows Bella dancing, scrolling through her phone and doing yoga alone in her room underneath Tiwa Savage and Solange posters.
Mulatu Astatke & Black Jesus Experience 'Lijay'
The legendary Mulatu Astatke blends his Ethio-jazz with the Melbourne-based group Black Jesus Experience's grooves on the new 9-track album, To Know Without Knowing, which was recorded between Addis Ababa and Melbourne. "Lijay," a standout from the record, is a tribute to a mother's love. Meaning child in Amharic ("Lij"), the track is an infectious mix of Lijay of funk guitar riffs and reggae grooves.
Hugh Masekela 'Tonwship Grooves'
The Hugh Masekela Heritage Foundation and Universal Music (South Africa) released Township Grooves, a new compilation album by Hugh Masekela on Friday, 16 May, which could have been the late jazz legend's 81st birthday. The songs on Township Grooves were picked from various albums released between 1965 and 1974. Bra Hugh's nephew Mabusha Masekela was largely involved in putting together Township Grooves. The project consists of songs such as "Sharpeville," "Vuca," "Grazing in the Grass" and a 1965 live rendition of "U-Dwi" among other gems. The release acts as a time capsule as it captures a period in Bra Hugh's life in which his music was meeting different influences as he found himself settling in places like London and New York.
MUT4Y & ELHI 'Feelin U'
MUT4Y—one half of Legendury Beatz duo who've produced hits for Wizkid, J Balvin x Bad Bunny and many more—recently dropped his latest EP, EU4RIA, which sees him collaborating with rising mellow-pop act, ELHI. The pair have now shared the new visualizer for EP standout "Feelin U" which you can check out above.
Groupe RTD 'The Dancing Devils of Djibouti'
Ostinato Records presents what they call "the first ever international album to emerge from Djibouti" from Groupe RTD, one of East Africa's best kept secrets. Get into The Dancing Devils of Djibouti.
Joya Mooi 'Hold You Tight'
Amsterdam-based artist Joya Mooi shares her latest single, "Hold You Tight." The reflective song, produced by Blazehoven, is a soothing mix of soul sounds and ambient R&B complete with pensive lyrics and an infectious hook. It sees Mooi musing on past trust issues, self-perception and the outcomes of unhealthy relationships. "Fortunately I'm now in a phase where I really trust positive things will come to me. And that I deserve all the things that I work for," she tells OkayAfrica. "But that wasn't always the case. In 'Hold You Tight' I really wanted to connect my past self with the circumstances that life used to put me in."
Davido Ft. Shizzi & Wale 'Won Le Ba'
Nigerian producer Shizzi has just dropped his first official single of the year titled "Won Le Ba". The laid-back track features Nigerian superstar Davido and American-Nigerian rapper Wale. With artists such as these, its unsurprising that the number is a collaborative hit you'll have stuck on repeat.
Follow our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.
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