News Brief

Sims, Just G and Ranks ATM. Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Listen to Just G, Ranks ATM and Sims’ New Mixtape ‘3 Way’

Just G, Ranks ATM and Sims finally share their debut mixtape.

If you've been following the ATM (African Trap Movement) gang closely, then you know a joint project from three of its members—Just G, Ranks ATM and Sims—has been a long time in the making.

3 Way is a 10-track mixtape consisting of songs performed by the trio collectively, including the lead single "M.I.A," which has been out for a few months. The only guests on the project are two of ATM's founding members Emtee and Saudi, who appear on the songs "Where Would I Be" and "Silent Night."


Production on the mixtape is predominantly handled by Ruff and Kreazo, two producers who are affiliated with the ATM camp (Ruff has produced most Emtee, Saudi and Sjava's projects). Ndu Browns produces the song "Run It Up." Ruff doubles as an executive producer.

Owing to having only two main producers, 3 Way sounds monolithic, which makes it more of an album than a mixtape. The songs vary in mood and lyrical content, making for a wholesome listen instead of a random selection of songs, which you normally expect from mixtapes in their traditional form.

3 Way does a great job of illustrating the potential the three rappers have. Their diversity and chemistry exhibit crew members who understand each other's abilities and know how to optimize them. The production on the project is predominantly trap as you'd expect, and the three artists sing and rap in varied styles and languages, including SiSwati, IsiZulu, IsiXhosa and of course English and slang.

Stream 3 Way below and revisit our interview with Just G, Ranks ATM and Sims here.




Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

Adekunle Gold Is Living His Best Life

We speak to the Nigerian star about how marriage and fatherhood have led him to find both newfound happiness and newfound freedom as an artist.