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Asa 'Lucid' cover.

The 14 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Asa, Patoranking x Busiswa, $pacely, Vagabon, Shane Eagle 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.



Asa 'Lucid' LP

After a five year hiatus Asa, one of Nigeria's most celebrated artists, has released her fourth studio album Lucid. The 14-track album, includes the previously released singles "Good Thing" and "The Beginning" which the singer dropped earlier this year to positive reviews. The singer-songwriter took to social media writing "I have looked forward to sharing this with you for sometime now but I wanted it to be special, that much I owe you. For being with me from the beginning, thank you from my soul. I hope this makes you happy, brings you joy and somehow, you can find yourself in these songs." She also shared a live studio performance of the album's first track "Murder in the USA,' check It out below.

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Tshego feat. King Monada 'No Ties'

Tshego has finally let go of the visuals for his collaboration with house hitmaker King Monada. The song has proven a fan-favorite from Tshego's recently released album Pink Panther since it was released as a single. "No Ties" is tailored for the dance floor, and will form the summer's soundtrack. The video is littered with the color pink like most of Tshego's videos. The two artists perform in different locations, including the bank of a dam, a house and later, in a club under strobing laser beams.

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Patoranking 'Open Fire' ft. Busiswa

The talented Patoranking gifted the world with the video for the track "Open Fire" featuring Busiswa. The Nigerian fusion artist has hit us yet again with arrestingly stunning visuals to accompany his emphatic, bombastic and infectious music. "Open Fire" is a song produced by Boris Vossgatter and Monareng Makwetla off the superstar's second album, Wilmer, named after his daughter—who he calls his greatest emotional achievement—which came out in May of this year.

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$pacely 'Fine$$e or Be Fine$$ed'

La Même Gang is an urban Ghanaian hip-hop/alté collective based in Accra. The group is made up of six members that include Darkovibes, Kiddblack, Nxwrth, RJZ, $pacely and Kwaku BS. $pacely ​currently dropped his first solo project entitled Fine$e Or Be Fine$ed. The 10-track project shows of the artist's versatile sound and certainly has a number of bangers worth listening to. Speaking about the new project $pacely tells OkayAfrica that "Fine$e or Be Fine$ed is an experimental journey into my mood, every mood has a song. I write about things I see and have been through like love, brotherhood, the struggle."

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Solo 'Two By Two' ft. Buks

This morning, Solo shared the visuals for "Two by Two," the lead single to the South African rapper's latest album C.Plenty.Dreams. "Two by Two" features BETR Gang member, Solo's long-time collaborator and producer, Buks. "Two by Two" sees the rapper open up about his admiration for his wife and admits he will always seek guidance from his parents. The song's visuals are fitting, as they are essentially a highlight video for Solo and his wife Dineo Langa's wedding. The wedding was turned into a three-part TV special on 1Magic last month.

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Vagabon 'Every Woman'

Cameroonian-born singer-songwriter Laetitia Tamko, better known as her stage name Vagabon, has been spoiling us with delights as of late. First, the crooner teased us with two singles, "Flood" and "Water Me Down" from her forthcoming sophomore album, Vagabon, a work she wrote and produced herself. And today, she surprised us with a new single and video for "Every Woman"—a track Tamko claims is the "thesis of the album."

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Shane Eagle 'Dark Moon Flower' LP

Fans have been waiting for the release of Shane Eagle's mixtape Dark Moon Flower since it was announced three weeks ago. The South African rapper's project is finally live on all streaming platforms. Dark Moon Flower, unlike the rapper's previous projects, is heavy on features. "It's a bridge between two worlds", Shane Eagle told Apple Music on the album's liner notes. "It shows that there's no measurable level of what you can achieve, just 'cause of where you're from." Each song on the project, says the 23-year-old, represents a year of his life. Nasty C appears on "PARIS," one of the strongest songs on the project, which is generally a great listen. Other guests include Santi, PatricKxxLee, theMIND, Bas and many others.

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Falle Nioke 'Salia'

Falle Nioke is a singer and multi-instrumentalist from Conakry, Guinea who you need to get to know. Nioke has just released a new single produced by Johan Hugo of The Very Best. "Salia," has pumping, pulsating beats. His voice is bold and rings clear, alternating between pure sound and slightly effected vocals–doubling them to make it sound like a ghost-version of himself is trailing close behind.

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Amaarae 'LIKE IT'

Amaarae comes through with the new music video for her latest single, "Like It," an addictive track produced by Rvdical The Kid. Read her article for OkayAfrica on 3 Moments That Defined My Journey As A Young Woman In Search of Herself & Her Purpose.

Zoocci Coke Dope x Ami Faku 'Regrets...'

The idea of a collaboration between South African hip-hop artist Zoocci Coke Dope and Afro soul singer Ami Faku was intriguing because no one could predict what it would sound like. "Regrets" is somber in mood, as it's built over a gloomy piano. Ami Faku's verse glides over the keys, before the drums kick in with Zoocci's verse.

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Ayanda Jiya 'The Sun'

Ayanda Jiya's latest single "The Sun" has been doing well on the charts. The song has been in the top 10 most played songs across all radio stations in South Africa. "The Sun" is from the R&B artist's debut album Ayandastand, which was released in August. "The Sun" is essentially a motivational song, in which Ayanda encourages her listener to hang in there just a little longer, as hope is near.

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Moonchild Sanelly 'WHERE DE DEE KAT ?'

Moonchild Sanelly comes through with another tongue-in-cheek head-nodder with "Where De Dee Kat?" The new loosie was produced by Geneva's Zalvf (OZADYA) and Brasilia's kLap. Revisit her recent video for "Newton Chips" alongside Dejot.

Garçons 'Ladybug'

Garçons are a duo coming out of Canada comprised of Nigerian-rooted singer-songwriter Deelo Avery and producer/director Julian Strangelove. The Ottawa-based group now shares the new music video for their ear-grabbing single "Ladybug," which blends Avery's smooth falsetto vocals with a funk-inspired guitar melody.

DAP The Contract 'PRISMCOLORS'

Nigerian artist Dap The Contract shares a kaleidoscopic music video for "Prismcolors," the highlight from his music series Contract Thursdays or CTII. Check it out above and get into the rest of the CTIII tracks here and here.

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


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Photo: Tjeerd Braat. Courtesy of Marieme.

The 11 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Bas, Ycee, Major League, Moonchild Sanelly, Niniola, Indigo Stella, Fireboy DML, Marieme 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.

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Still from YouTube

Watch Fireboy DML's New Music Video for 'Need You'

The buzzing Nigerian artist shares the video for the standout single from his debut album "Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps."

Buzzing Nigerian artist Fireboy DML has shared the music video for his latest single "Need You," one of the standouts from his warmly received debut album Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps.Laughter.

The track is an emotive love ballad, that sees the artist singing about the strong feelings he has for his partner over mellow guitar riffs. The song was produced by Pheelz.

The music video, directed by Clarence Peters, shows the artist and a love interest as they try and escape together, and later get caught up with the bad guy that's out to separate them. The events lead to a tragic ending for the couple. It's the fourth music video offering from Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps. "Of course, it's a tale of love—of finding it again, of learning that time is fickle and you have to treasure what you hold dear while you still can," wrote Fireboy about the song on Twitter.

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Photo courtesy of CSA Global.

In Conversation with Congolese NBA Player Emmanuel Mudiay: 'I want more African players in the NBA.'

The Utah Jazz player talks about being African in the NBA, supporting basketball in the DRC and how 'everybody knows about Burna Boy'.

Inspired by his basketball-playing older brothers, by second grade, Emmanuel Mudiay already knew that he wanted to play in the American National Basketball Association. Then in 2001 his family, fleeing the war in Democratic Republic of Congo, sought asylum in the United States.

In America, Mudiay saw basketball as a way for him to improve his situation. After impressive high school and college careers, he moved to China to play pro ball. Picked 7th overall in the 2015 NBA draft, the now 23-year-old guard has made a name for himself this season coming off the bench for the Utah Jazz.

Mudiay attests to the sport having changed not only his life but that of his siblings. Basketball gave them all a chance at a good education and the opportunity to dream without conditions. Now he wants to see other talented African players make it too.

We caught up with him to talk about his experience as an African player in the NBA, his hopes for basketball on the African continent and who he and his teammates jam out to in their locker rooms.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

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University lecturer and activist Doctor Stella Nyanzi (L) reacts in court as she attends a trial to face charges for cyber-harassment and offensives communication, in Kampala, on April 10, 2017. (Photo by GAEL GRILHOT/AFP via Getty Images)

Jailed Ugandan Activist, Stella Nyanzi, Wins PEN Prize for Freedom of Expression

The outspoken activist, who is currently serving a prison sentence for a poem she wrote about the president's mother's vagina, won for her resistance "in front of a regime that is trying to suppress her."

Stella Nyanzi, the Ugandan academic, activist, and vocal critic of President Yoweri Museveni has been awarded the 2020 Oxfam Novib/PEN International award for freedom of expression, given to writers who "continue to work for freedom of expression in the face of persecution."

Nyanzi is currently serving a 15 month sentence for "cyber harassment" after she published a poem in which she wrote that she wished "the acidic pus flooding Esiteri's (the president's mother) vaginal canal had burn up your unborn fetus. Burn you up as badly as you have corroded all morality and professionalism out of our public institutions in Uganda."

According to the director of PEN International, Carles Torner, her unfiltered outspokenness around the issues facing her country is what earned her the award. "For her, writing is a permanent form of resistance in front of a regime that is trying to suppress her," said Torner at the award ceremony.

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