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Introducing OkayAfrica On Apple Music

We're proud to announce our new partnership with Apple as a curator on Apple Music.

OkayAfrica is proud to announce its new partnership with Apple as a curator on Apple Music.


As the leading media company connecting a global audience to the African continent, OkayAfrica’s curated page will keep listeners on the pulse of the African music scene.

Selected by our editorial team and its wide network of contributors, DJs, artists, and musicians, the OkayAfrica curated page will showcase the many diverse styles and sounds coming out of the African continent.

Playlists will include selections of the hottest afrobeats sounds, dedicated mixtapes to Africa's many famous musical genres and artistic legends, as well as a weekly-updated playlist to keep listeners on top of what's new and cool across the African continent and its diaspora.

We'll be launching our Apple Music curated page with five initial playlists: an Afrobeats Starter Kit, a Power mixtape, a selection of our favorite Vintage African Records, the best current South African Hip-Hop, and our recurring Songs You Need to Hear This Week.

Explore OkayAfrica's channel on Apple Music here and make sure to follow us to stay updated on our selections!

Get a closer look at our initial OkayAfrica playlists on Apple Music below.

Afrobeats Starter Kit

Our Afrobeats Starter Kit is an introduction to the biggest afrobeats hits to date. These are the songs that have defined the genre taking over airwaves across the globe, from D'banj's "Oliver Twist" to Wizkid's "Ojuelegba" and everything in between. Check out the Afrobeats Starter Kit, featuring hit songs from P-Square, Tiwa Savage, Davido, SarkodieBurna Boy and many more.

Vintage African Records

From long lost Ghanaian cassette tapes to Northern & East African record digging finds, these are the Vintage African Records you need in your life. This playlist compiles our favorite vintage re-releases that have come out recently, including classics from Fela Kuti to lesser-known '70s Ghanaian disco, Zamrock, Zulu rock, Cabo Verdean dance grooves, Nigerian psych-rock, and more.

Mzansi Heat: South African Hip-Hop

This is our South African Hip-Hop mixtape, Mzanzi Heat, which takes a look at the best South African hip-hop tracks that dropped last year, as compiled by OkayAfrica's resident SA hip-hop wizard Sabelo Mkhabela. Take a listen below for bangers from Nasty C, Riky Rick, AKA, K.O and more.

#Power

These are songs about people in power and those fighting the power, to match OkayAfrica's editorial theme this month of #POWER. More importantly, we listen to these songs to inspire our own resistance in these very trying times. Listen ahead for new and classic revolutionary songs close to our hearts.

Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Here at OkayAfrica, we get hundreds of music submissions every day. Our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlist will highlight the best new African music with a weekly-updated round up of the top tracks that came across our desks. This playlist will be updated every Friday, so make sure to check back and follow us for new songs to jam to every week!

Explore OkayAfrica's Apple Music channel here

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Introducing OkayAfrica's 100 Women 2020 List

Celebrating African Women Laying the Groundwork for the Future

It would not be hyperbole to consider the individuals we're honoring for OkayAfrica's 100 Women 2020 list as architects of the future.

This is to say that these women are building infrastructure, both literally and metaphorically, for future generations in Africa and in the Diaspora. And they are doing so intentionally, reaching back, laterally, and forward to bridge gaps and make sure the steps they built—and not without hard work, mines of microaggressions, and challenges—are sturdy enough for the next ascent.

In short, the women on this year's list are laying the groundwork for other women to follow. It's what late author and American novelist Toni Morrison would call your "real job."

"I tell my students, 'When you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else."

And that's what inspired us in the curation of this year's list. Our honorees use various mediums to get the job done—DJ's, fashion designers, historians, anthropologists, and even venture capitalists—but each with the mission to clear the road ahead for generations to come. Incredible African women like Eden Ghebreselassie, a marketing lead at ESPN who created a non-profit to fight energy poverty in Eritrea; or Baratang Miya, who is quite literally building technology clubs for disadvantaged youth in South Africa.

There are the builds that aren't physically tangible—movements that inspire women to show up confidently in their skin, like Enam Asiama's quest to normalize plus-sized bodies and Frédérique (Freddie) Harrel's push for Black and African women to embrace the kink and curl of their hair.

And then there are those who use their words to build power, to take control of the narrative, and to usher in true inclusion and equity. Journalists, (sisters Nikki and Lola Ogunnaike), a novelist (Oyinkan Braithwaite), a media maven (Yolisa Phahle), and a number of historians (Nana Oforiatta Ayim, Leïla Sy) to name a few.

In a time of uncertainty in the world, there's assuredness in the mission to bring up our people. We know this moment of global challenge won't last. It is why we are moving forward to share this labor of love with you, our trusted and loyal audience. We hope that this list serves as a beacon for you during this moment—insurance that future generations will be alright. And we have our honorees to thank for securing that future.

EXPERIENCE 100 WOMEN 2020

The annual OkayAfrica 100 Women List is our effort to acknowledge and uplift African women, not only as a resource that has and will continue to enrich the world we live in, but as a group that deserves to be recognized, reinforced and treasured on a global scale. In the spirit of building infrastructure, this year's list will go beyond the month of March (Women's History Month in America) and close in September during Women's Month in South Africa.

100 women 2020

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Burna Boy 'African Giant' money cover art by Sajjad.

The 20 Essential Burna Boy Songs

We comb through the Nigerian star's hit-filled discography to select 20 essential songs from the African Giant.

Since bursting onto the scene in 2012 with his chart-topping single, "Like to Party," and the subsequent release of his debut album, L.I.F.E - Leaving an Impact for eternity, Burna Boy has continued to prove time and again that he is a force to be reckoned with.

The African Giant has, over the years, built a remarkable musical identity around the ardent blend of dancehall, hip-hop, reggae, R&B, and afropop to create a game-changing genre he calls afro-fusion. The result has been top tier singles, phenomenal collaborations, and global stardom—with several accolades under his belt which include a Grammy nomination and African Giant earning a spot on many publications' best albums of 2019.

We thought to delve into his hit-filled discography to bring you The 20 Essential Burna Boy Songs.

This list is in no particular order.

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News Brief
Photo by Gallo Images/Brenton Geach.

South Africans Condemn Police Brutality During National Lockdown

A number of videos have emerged on social media allegedly showing the intimidation and assault of several Black South Africans by law enforcement.

South Africa recently began a nationwide lockdown in an effort to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has been deployed across the nation to aid the police in ensuring that the rules of the lockdown are upheld. However, disturbing footage has emerged on social media allegedly depicting law enforcement agents assaulting Black South Africans.

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Image by Sabelo Mkhabela.

This Is What It Takes for South African Musicians to Succeed Abroad

Jeremy Loops, Shimza, Moonchild Sanelly and GoodLuck discuss what it took to build their names overseas.

Disclaimer: The conversation which this piece makes reference to took place before the COVID-19 pandemic hit South Africa.

"I said it for 10 years that I'm going to work with Beyoncé, and everybody laughed for those 10 years. And I said it with conviction. Today, I'm on a Grammy-nominated album [on a song] with Beyoncé right now," says Moonchild Sanelly referring to the song "MY POWER" in which she's featured in alongside Busiswa, Nija, Yemi Alade, Tierra Whack and of course Queen B herself. The track is a fan-favorite from the Lion King: The Gift soundtrack album curated by Beyoncé. Moonchild is pulling out these receipts to elaborate a point she just made about self-belief which helped her build a career that's recognized globally, a feat very few South African artists have achieved.

A few of those artists— Jeremy Loops, Shimza and Juliet Harding (a member of the versatile electronic band GoodLuck)—are on the podium alongside Moonchild during the Midem Africa Conference in Langa, Cape Town towards the end of February. The four musicians are in conversation with Trenton Birch, musician and founder of Bridges for Music Academy, sharing their secrets to breaking into the highly competitive and advanced music markets of mainly Europe and the US.

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