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Best Music of the Week: Yemi Alade, Emtee, Phyno x Olamide & More

Here are the songs you need to hear this week.

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 OkayAfrica on Spotify and Apple Music to get immediate updates every week and read about some of our selections ahead.


Phyno "Augment" feat. Olamide

Fino Phyno comes through with the heat in "Augment," his super-catchy collaboration with Olamide. The single now gets an equally-impressive music video with plenty of group dancing. You'll be hitting replay on this one.

Emtee "Manando"

On his sophomore album, Manando, South African rapper Emtee found his voice and became SA's number one trapper. He now shares the raw visual to the album's title track.

Yemi Alade "Nakupenda" (Swahili Version)

Yemi Alade connects with Kenyan star Nyashinski for the Swahili version of her Mama Africa romantic single "Nakupenda." Look out for Yemi's upcoming record, Black Magic, which is due soon.

DJ ECool "Kilode" feat. Dremo

DJ ECool has a new single that's bound to light up dance floors across NYC, London and Lagos. In "Kilode," Ecool—who DJ's for Davido—connects with Nigeria's Dremo for an addictive tune.

Mel,b Akwen "Blessings" feat. Longue Longue

Cameroonian afropop star Mel,b Akwen's "Blessings" will have you on your feet in no time. The diva connects with Makossa legend Longue Longue for this incredible track, which is now available on iTunes here.

Wani "Instaman"

Nigerian-American afropop artist Wani has been making noise with his remix of Drake's "Blem." He recently dropped the dancehall-influenced, Instagram-inspired tune "Instaman," which should have you grooving through the week.

Follow our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlists on Spotify and Apple Music to get immediate updates every week.

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Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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