AKA’s 2016 Single ‘Dreamwork’ Has Gone 5 Times Diamond

Four of AKA's singles have been certified multi platinum and diamond.

In what's a first in South African hip-hop, and possibly South African music, AKA's 2016 single "Dreamwork," which features Yanga Chief, has been certified five times diamond by RiSA. The announcement was made at a private event in a fancy restaurant somewhere in the north of Joburg.

On the night, it was also announced that "One Time," a single AKA released in the same year, has also gone diamond. "The World is Yours" (2017) and "Caiphus Song" (2017) have also both gone eight times platinum. "The said that song was rubbish," AKA chipped in about "Caiphus Song."

"I would like to thank Yanga Chief, me and him did a lot of hard work on these songs. And also, thanks to Vth Season—Benza and Ninel, Tshiamo. And obviously, Sony," said the artist and producer.

This is a big year for AKA (just like all other years since 2011). His sophomore album Levels (2014) was certified seven times platinum in July. The album has also amassed over 11.9 million video views and 28 million combined streams.

AKA's latest album Touch My Blood (2018) was certified double platinum in March.

Platinum status is equivalent to 30,000 copies in South Africa. Diamond is ten times that, so "Dreamwork" has moved at least 1,5 million in sales. "One Time" has moved more than 300,000 copies and "The World is Yours" and "Caiphus Song" have each moved at least 240,000. Serious numbers, if you ask us.

AKA is currently working on a new album, which is believed to be coming this year. Last week, Supa Mega released two singles "Main Ou's" featuring YoungstaCPT and "F.R.E.E" which features Riky Rick and DJ Tira.

Stream the singles below:


6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

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