Audio

Is Alicia Keys’ New Single Afrobeats?

A half-baked case for the 'afrobeats' influences in Alicia Keys' new single "In Common."

Alicia Keys recently came out with her new single “In Common” ahead of her performance on Saturday Night Live.


The track, produced by Illangelo, is a light composition built on shuffling rhythms and a bouncing bassline that has our whole office wondering if “In Common” is basically an ‘afrobeats’ song.

We already know Alicia Keys and husband Swizz Beatz have been listening to their fair share of Nigerian pop lately. Swizz recently collaborated with MC Galaxy and has posted tons of clips of himself and Alicia Keys getting down to Wizkid, Skales, and other Nigerian acts on his Instagram.

This song makes me happy??? #goodvibes @wizkidayo ????

A video posted by Alicia Keys (@aliciakeys) on

They're definitely aware of the ‘afrobeats’ wave and that influence can be felt in the track’s syncopated beat work and some of Alicia Keys’ own vocal cadences.

Maybe it's the single's Toronto-based producer Illangelo, who’s worked with The Weeknd and Drake, who absorbed some of the vibes from “One Dance.”

Or maybe we can just chalk it up as another increasingly common instance of American pop stars taking cues from African and Caribbean rhythms (see: “Work,” "Hotline Bling").

For what it's worth, the press release that accompanied the song actually credits a "Latin inspired rhythm," but I mean, listen to that snare.

The only thing we know for sure is Snoop Dogg’s feeling it:

New @aliciakeys my OG @snoopdogg said this shit make me move in a different way cuz??????????????????????????

A video posted by therealswizzz (@therealswizzz) on

Audio
Image via Sheila Afari PR.

9 Black Electronic Musicians You Should Be Listening To

Featuring DJ Lag, Spellling, Nozinja, Klein, LSDXOXO and more.

We know that Black queer DJs from the Midwest are behind the creation of house and dance music. Yet, a look at the current electronic scene will find it terribly whitewashed and gentrified, with the current prominent acts spinning tracks sung by unnamed soulful singers from time to time. Like many art forms created by Black people all over the world, the industry hasn't paid homage to its pioneers, despite the obvious influence they have. Thankfully, the independent music scene is thriving with many Black acts inspired by their forefathers and mothers who are here to revolutionize electronic music. Here are a list of the ones you should check out:

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

Kwesta Slams BMW South Africa’s Latest Advert For Using His Song Without Permission

Kwesta has called out BMW South Africa for blatantly using his song without his permission.