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Fatoumata Diawara on A Colors Show (Youtube)

The 10 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring K.O, Fatoumata Diawara, Burna Boy, Harmonize, Darkovibes x Runtown, Shatta Wale 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.



Darkovibes 'Mike Tyson' feat. Runtown

A few months ago, Ghanaian artist and La Meme Gang member Darkovibes connected with Nigeria's Runtown for "Mike Tyson." That addictive single now gets a new music video, directed by Zed, which follows both artists across Accra's High street and other city locations. "Mike Tyson is a song for champions, pathfinders and trail blazers," a statement from Darkovibes' team reads. "It is for those who stand against popular opinions and make it."

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Fatoumata Diawara 'Nterini' x Colors

Celebrated Malian singer Fatoumata Diawara is the latest artist to grace the YouTube-based performance series A COLORS SHOW. The award-winning artist took to the color-coordinated set to perform her 2018 song "Nterini," from her Grammy-nominated album Fenfo, and her performance is striking in every way. As usual, Diawara delivers powerhouse vocals in the Wassoulou tradition. To top it all off the singer treats viewers to a stellar guitar solo mid-performance. The nearly four-minute performance is stunning throughout.

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Costa Titch x AKA x Riky Rick 'Nkalakatha'

AKA and Riky Rick recently jumped on up-and-coming rapper Costa Tich's viral hit "Nkalakatha." Riky Rick's verse doesn't disappoint, as usual—he has been on a winning streak with his guest verses (let's not get into his verse on Priddy Ugly's verse "Every Mountain Got a Peak"). But AKA's verse has been trending since the song dropped yesterday. It's the subliminal shots he's throwing in the verse that has a lot of people talking. He seems to take aim at Burna Boy's recent tirade about South Africa amidst the xenophobic attacks in September.

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Harmonize 'Kushoto Kulia'

Tanzanian star Harmonize finishes off a solid 2019 with his latest single "Kushoto Kulia," which—as we've come to expect—is another banger from the Wasafi Records artist.

Burna Boy 'Collateral Damage/Anybody'

Grammy-nominated artist Burna Boy, appeared as the musical guest on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon. Burna Boy performed a medley of his songs "Collateral Damage" and "Anybody" from his latest album African Giant. Opening with 'Collateral Damage," the artist asked audience members to raise their fists, describing the song as "protest music." After that he headed into an energetic rendition of 'Anybody," delivering the zanku and several "gbeses" during the performance.

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Shatta Wale 'Time No Dey'

Shatta Wale is back with a new track, "Time No Dey." The new song, which was produced by Paq, comes accompanied by a music video that follows the Ghanaian heavyweight and a female companion as they ride around a highway in his Ferrari. The video was directed by PKMI.

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Reekado Banks 'Put In Pressure'

Reekado Banks follows-up his highly-addictive standout single "Rora" with the new party jam, "Put In Pressure." The celebratory single "is an automatic invite to a dance party. The song... taps the catchy up-tempo rhythm dominant on the streets of Lagos," his team states.

K.O 'Citi Boi/4AM'

K.O's latest single from his recently-released album PTY UnLTD is the song "Citi Boi." The South African rapper recently highlighted the song with a new music video. The video is a mashup of visuals for both "Citi Boi" and "4AM," which comes towards the end of the clip. "Citi Boi" is quintessential K.O, as the song references both trap by way of its distorted bassline and kwaito. K.O's combination of melodies and raps is what defines PTY UnLTD.

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Stogie T 'The Empire of Sheep'

Stogie T has finally released his EP The Empire of Sheep. The South African wordsmith has been teasing the project in the last few weeks.vThe Empire of Sheep tells the story of Stogie T's family, from his kids being snobbery and to him not having to worry about lawyer fees as his wife is on one on the project's opening song. Before the project was released, Stogie T shared: "The Empire of Sheep EP is an apogee of countless hours of conversation between Stogie T, his mother, an ex guerrilla fighter with Mkhonto WeSizwe, and many men and women that participated in the armed struggle against the fascist apartheid regime of South Africa."

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Navy Kenzo 'Magical'

Tanzanian duo Navy Kenzo drop the latest single and Director JC-shot video for "Magical." The new track follows "the duo [as they] celebrate love and romantic vibrations with a sweet and sexy Afro dancehall riddim," their team mentions.

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

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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