Video

Ghanaian Electro-Funk Crooner Jeff Darko Shares The Fluorescent Visuals For 'Bystander'

Ghanaian soul singer Jeff Darko speaks to us about the fluorescent visuals for his new single "Bystander".


We first got hooked to the sounds of Ghanaian crooner Jeff Darko last summer after the release of his debut EP, Epic Dreams Of A Pedestrian. Since then we've kept up with the trendy singer and style maven via his eclectic Instagram account hoping for some new tunes. This week, Darko brings back his hypnotic blend of soul, electro-funk and R&B on "Bystander," a mesmerizing dance track that calls for self-acceptance and individuality in a society that often condemns deviations from the status quo.

Darko, who emigrated from Ghana to France at a young age, often explores the tensions of being a foreigner in a strange land in his music. The slinky single, which premiered yesterday via The Wild, boasts a rich infusion of bongos, horns, funky guitars and choral vocals that back Darko's message of finding one's inner light and letting it shine. We caught up with the rising Barcelona-based singer over e-mail to find out the story behind his latest video and how he hopes to channel positivity to all through his music.

Jen for Okayafrica: What inspired your new track "Bystander"?

Jeff Darko: "Bystander" is a message to myself and equally to others. The inspiration comes from my own personal experiences, where I had to overcome a lot of hurdles. The lyrics introduce a new playful way of writing and the sound was inspired by Marvin Gaye, Fela Kuti and Miles Davis. It’s a taste of electro-funk music.

OKA: Could you walk us through your creative process as you put the track together?

JD: The process originally started in London with collaboration with producer O.M.B, who produced "Don’t Worry Me Now" off my debut EP. We started the building process of this song in 2013 straight after we completed "Don’t Worry Me Now." It always starts with me hearing a beat then building around it with the right melodies, lyrics and later modifying the beat to the new found direction. In this case the original beat was sculpted by O.M.B and the lyrics were written in company of Jonathan Holder and the new direction was assisted by producers at La Atlantida Estudio in Barcelona. The beat was originally quite dark and produced digitally and we felt that the lyrics will be giving new life in compliment of the electronic sounds, funk blended in with African and Brazilian influences accompanied by live instruments.

OKA: How did you and director Monica Heredero come up with the track's vibrant visuals?

JD: With the video, I simply described the message I wanted to deliver and Monica  put together an incredible mood board that caught my attention. Her early idea was to have a fluorescent theme because we were looking for something colorful but quite dark at the same time. Things in fluorescent hold their own light, so in effect our intention was to showcase the idea of giving light and life. We wanted to express that during dark times you could depend on the light inside you to shine.

Next Page
Video
Sarkodie "Bumper" (Youtube)

Watch Sarkodie's New Music Video For 'Bumper'

A dance-heavy clip for the Ghanaian star's turn-up single.

Sarkodie comes through with the energetic new dance video for "Bumper."

The new track is a high-octane affair that sees the Ghanaian star rapper delivering some standout rhymes and flows over an afro-fusion leaning production from Nigeria's Rexxie.

The new video for "Bumper," which was directed by Monte Carlo Dream, follows a group of dancers as they show off their moves inside a barbershop.

"Bumper" comes after the release of Sarkodie's latest album, Black Love, which features the likes of Donae'o, Idris Elba, Efya, Mr Eazi, Stonebwoy, Tekno, Maleek Berry, King Promise, Kizz Daniel and several other artists.

OkayAfrica spoke with the artist in November, following his win for Best International Flow at the BET Hip Hop awards. "[The album] is just about love amongst black people and it's 90 or 80 percent based on relationships," he said.

Watch the new music video for Sarkodie's "Bumper" below.

Keep reading...
Video
Stormzy performs during The BRIT Awards 2020 at The O2 Arena. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage) via Getty Images.

Watch Stormzy's Powerful BRIT Awards Performance Featuring Burna Boy

The night saw the British-Ghanaian star run through a medley of songs from his latest album, Heavy Is the Head.

The BRIT Awards 2020, which went down earlier this week, saw the likes of Stormzy take home the Best Male trophy home and Dave win Best Album.

The night also saw Stormzy deliver a stunning performance that featured a medley of songs from his latest album, Heavy Is the Head. The British-Ghanaian star started things out slow with "Don't Forget to Breathe," before popping things off with "Do Better" then turning up the heat with "Wiley Flow."

Stormzy nodded to J Hus, playing a short bit of "Fortune Teller," before being joined onstage by Nigeria's Burna Boy to perform their hit "Own It." Burna Boy got his own moment and performed an energetic rendition of his African Giant favorite "Anybody."

The night was closed off with a powerful message that read: "A lot of time they tell us 'Black people, we too loud.' Know what I'm sayin'? We need to turn it down a little bit. We seem too arrogant. We a little too much for them to handle. Black is beautiful man." The message flashed on a black screen before a moving performance of "Rainfall" backed by his posse.

Watch the full performance below.

Keep reading...
popular

K.O Releases ‘Killa Combo’ Featuring Zingah, Loki, Tellaman and Mariechan

Listen to the first single released under K.O's new imprint Skhandaworld.

The last time we spoke to K.O., he revealed that one of his goals for the year is to launch Skhandaworld, a newly launched imprint founded by the South African emcee. The up-and-coming rapper Loki was a top priority as he is the first signee under the label.

Keep reading...
News Brief
Twice As Tall World Tour. Flyer provided by Atlantic Records.

Burna Boy Announces 'Twice As Tall' World Tour Dates

The Nigerian star will be playing shows across North America and Europe this summer.

Burna Boy is hitting the road again.

Following the celebrated release of African Giant—which came with nominations at both the Grammys & BRIT Awards and a trophy for Best International Act at the BET Awards—the Nigerian star will be embarking on a long run of shows that will take him across North America and Europe.

The Twice As Tall World Tour will kick off in May in Atlanta, and will see Burna Boy playing concerts across the US, Canada, Norway, France, Portugal, UK, Netherlands, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and more locations.

You can check out the full tour dates for Twice As Tall World Tour below and revisit Burna Boy's performance for Okay Acoustics.

Tickets are available now.

Keep reading...

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.