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The Songs You Need to Hear This Week

These are the best songs that came across our desks this week, featuring Davido, Jidenna, Spoek Mathambo and more.

At the end of every week, we highlight the creme of the crop in music and round up the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks throughout the last few days.


Check out all of the "Songs You Need to Hear This Week" in our extended Apple Music curator playlist and read about some of the selections ahead.

Jidenna's "Bambi"

Jidenna's riding high off the release of his debut album The Chief, which dropped last Friday following much anticipation.

Just yesterday, we premiered his latest video for the highlife-inspired, slow-burner "Bambi," a track that sees Jidenna flexing his vocal range atop hazy production.

Legendury Beatz link up with Wizkid & Mugeez for "Undercover Lover"

Legendury Beatz master every shade of 'afrobeats' in their new mixtape, Afropop 101. "Undercover Lover," which features star collaborators Wizkid and Mugeez, is a clear highlight on their new tape.

Stream our ‘Songs You Need to Hear’ playlist on Apple Music, updated every Friday.

Spoek Mathambo returns with "I Found U"

Spoek Mathambo has been quiet for a minute. The South African innovator comes back strong with "I Found U," a track featuring his band Fantasma and the 'future soul' electronic sister duo Kajama. It's the first single from his upcoming album, Mzanzi Beat Code.

"My mission has always been simple: to enrich and expand the palette of South African music with a vision that’s being introspective and open to outside influence," Spoek tells The Fader. "The melange of our guitar and bass styles with beats is the sweet spot. I’m pretty happy to realize my 'I Found You' leads with bass and guitar from our folk music, Maskandi."

While you're at it, make sure to check out Spoek's recent Blacswet EP with French electronic producer The Impostur.

Davido’s Tekno-Produced Single "If"

Davido connects with Tekno for his latest single "If." It's a memorable one, no doubt, but there’s more humor in appreciating the confluence of Igbo, Hausa, pidgin and English—what to some might be disparate elements made into a seamless whole. We broke down a few in our review:

Words and Meanings

Tutu – safe to assume it is an affectionate term.

Burkutu – locally brewed alcholic drink from Northern Nigeria.

Chuk – to pierce, or insert

Chuku-chuku – thorny or spiky

Obianuju – you came in the time of abundance

Juju – if you don’t know this one you shouldn’t be on an OkayAfrica webpage.

Tunisian singer Emel's "Ensen Dhaif"

Emel Mathlouthi, the ‘voice of the Tunisian Revolution,’ releases her new album, Ensen today. We spoke to her about making 'political art' and her new record.

 

Music
(Youtube)

9 Must-Hear Songs From Ghana's Buzzing Drill Scene

We give you the rundown on Ghana's drill movement, Asakaa, and the most popular songs birthed by it.

Red bandanas, streetwear, security dogs, and gang signs. If you've been paying any attention to the music scene in Ghana over the past few months, then by now you would have noticed the rise of a special hip-hop movement. The movement is called Asakaa, and it's the Ghanaian take on the Chicago-born subgenre of hip-hop called drill music. It's fresh, it's hot, it's invigorating and it's nothing like anything you've seen before from this part of the world.

The pioneers of Asakaa are fondly referred to by the genre's patrons as the Kumerica boys, a set of budding young rappers based in the city of Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. They came into the limelight towards the end of 2020, and have been dropping banger after banger since then, topping several charts and racking up millions of views collectively. The rap is charismatic, the visuals are captivating, and their swag is urban. Characterized by Twi lyrics, infectious hooks, and sinister beats, the allure and appeal of both their art and their culture is overflowing.

"Sore," one of the benchmark songs of the movement, is a monster hit that exploded into the limelight, earning Kumerican rapper Yaw Tog a feature on Billboard Italy and a recent remix that featured Stormzy. "Ekorso" by Kofi Jamar is the song that took over Ghana's December 2020, with the video currently sitting at 1.3 million views on YouTube. "Off White Flow" is the song that earned rapper Kwaku DMC and his peers a feature on Virgil Abloh's Apple Music show Televised Radio. These are just a few examples of the numerous accolades that the songs birthed from the Asakaa movement have earned. Ghana's drill scene is the new cool, but it isn't just a trend. It's an entire movement, and it's here to stay.

Want to get familiar? Here we highlight the most prominent songs of the Asakaa movement that you need to know. Here's our rundown of Ghana's drill songs that are making waves right now. Check them out below.

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