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Tiwa Savage.

The 9 Best Nigerian Songs of the Month (July)

Featuring Tiwa Savage, Wizkid, Adekunle Gold, Niniola, Rema and more.

Here are the Nigerian tracks we had on repeat in the month of July.

Follow our NAIJA HITS playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.



WizKid 'Smile' ft. H.E.R.

Nigerian musical heavyweight Wizkid released "Smile" featuring Grammy award winning US singer/songwriter H.E.R. The track coos sounds of unconditional love and the things we do for it. It features Wizkid and H.E.R. going in over an infectious beat. This comes as Wizkid fans await the release of his delayed fourth album, Made in Lagos. "Smile" follows Wizkid's latest release Soundman Vol. 1 EP, which came out late last year and featured the likes of Chronixx, DJ Tunez and more.

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Tiwa Savage 'Dangerous Love'

"Dangerous Love" is a signature Tiwa Savage number with elements of R&B and Afrobeats seamlessly coming together for a mellow and straight-up enjoyable track. The sensual music video also dropped just a week ago and clocked over 1 million views on YouTube in just 5 days—a true testament to the viral nature of the hit. The recent "Dangerous Love (Amapiano Remix)" features South African talents DJ Ganyani and De Mogul while the "Dangerous Love (Born In Soweto Remix)" features De Mthuda.

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Adekunle Gold feat. Nailah Blackman 'AG Baby'

Adekunle Gold is back with his third single of the year, "AG Baby" to the delight of many of his fans. The single features singer Naila Blackman on the hook, and a pulsating, dance-worthy beat. Production is from TMXO. It's his latest single since the explosive "Something Different." It's been an eventful year for the artist, who hinted at the release of his upcoming album earlier this week, writing: "I want to brag about my album so much. But no be my lifestyle lol," on twitter. It looks like we can also expect a music video for "AG Baby," to drop soon, as the artist shared a clip of a visual, which he says will be premiering on Triller.

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Niniola 'Addicted'

Niniola comes through with the addictive new single and lyric video for "Addicted," the latest taste from her upcoming sophomore album, Colours and Sounds, dropping in September. Niniola is set free offer this head-nodding beat, produced by longtime collaborator Sarz. "'Addicted' is about searching for a long-lost love," mentions Niniola. "Having a crazy addiction to love."

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Rema 'Woman'

The highly-buzzing Rema continues to shine with "Woman," his latest single which topped off three consecutive weeks of new releases and his naming as Apple Music's Up Next artist. The young artist has become one of the leading voices of the new Nigerian generation since the release of his debut Rema EP and subsequent Bad Commando EP.

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Patoranking 'Abule'

Patoranking is back with his latest single "Abule," ahead of the release of his forthcoming album Three. The afro-dancehall artist's latest is "a celebration of his Lagos neighborhood, Ebute Metta, and of hoods worldwide," which premiered via Beats 1 Radio with Ebro. The song's upbeat production and catchy hook make for easy summer listening. It's a dancehall-inspired track with an afrobeats twist, which has become the singer's signature sound. He wants fans to follow in his lead of representing for his community, by creating custom graphics of their own "ends" via a newly launched site.

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DJ Tunez & Wizkid 'Cool Me Down'

Wizkid and DJ Tunez are back again. The frequent collaborators reunite for their latest track "Cool Me Down," and it doesn't disappoint. "Cool Me Down," is a mellow, yet dance-worthy track, which sees Wizkid dropping cheeky lyrics over breezy production. The track has us reminiscing about summer outings.

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DJ Spinall 'Everytime' ft. Kranium

DJ Spinall connects with dancehall heavyweight Kranium for this mid-tempo groove "Everytime." The new single is accompanied by a music video that emphasizes the sultry tone of the song. "I have to listen to everything," Spinall mentions of the collaboration. "Music is universal; you can create whatever you can create. My inspiration comes from everything, and of course, Kranium is one of the artists I respect, and it's been a great pleasure working with him. Now we got a single together, which we hope that it captures your heart every time."

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Ecool, Mayorkun, Zlatan, Dremo "ONOME"

Davido's official DJ, ECool, returned with his latest single "Onome" and accompanying visualizer video. He recruits Dremo, Zlatan & Mayorkun for this fun jam.

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Follow our NAIJA HITS playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.


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(Photo: Nichole Sobecki)

Kevin Mwachiro, journalist, queer activist, podcaster [Kenya]

"The reality of being queer is real. It is not a foreign thing. It is as Kenyan, as African as it may be, and it is ours. I remember I did an interview anonymously for the BBC back in 2006. And I told them, maybe within 50 years, I will see movement, it has happened so much faster. And not just in Kenya, but I've seen very many countries across Africa. And I am so, so happy that that is happening."

I was a church boy for a good part of my life. So, I was sometimes whore by night, Christian by day, if I can put it like that.

I had just come back from the UK where I did my masters and I knew I was not going to go back into the closet. I went to therapy and after going for over a year, I just got to accept myself for who I am. And I realized that I'm okay and I didn't want to come back and go back into the closet. I figure that closet stays in the U.K.

I was trying to find my space and a friend invited me to a group meeting. It was people talking about formalizing a movement or a way of coming together and it was fascinating. It just blew my mind. There were these people in the room and I'm like, "Fuck, these are all Kenyans." These are all Kenyans and I knew that I'd be fine.

And, along the way, being a journalist, I made sure that I would use the platform that I have to make sure that LGBTQI+ people are well represented. So I used to cover those stories shamelessly. People in the office wondered, 'Why is Kevin always doing the queer stories that no one wanted to touch?" I really didn't care. I figured I'm going to represent my people in the best way that I can.

But, Kenya is a lot more open now. It's amazing. I mean, it's fantastic to actually think that you can live a reasonable level of queerness here. Younger people are coming out, because it is possible. There are a lot more resources. There's a lot more support from what we had. There's a lot more, in some cases, visibility. There's community, there's a movement. There's, to some degree, health services. The internet has helped. There's visibility on TV and online.

But, we're not even out of the woods - far from it. But, there is light we're seeing. We've seen trans women being attacked, we've seen people being attacked in clubs. People being kicked out of their homes by landlords, there is still that. We've seen pushback in the arts. There was a movie called Rafiki which featured a lesbian couple - that got banned. And then we had Stories of Our Lives and that also got banned. I'm like, 'You motherfuckers!' They're silencing voices of not just queer people, but of talented Kenyans who want to see themselves represented in content created by Kenyans for Kenyans.

In 2011, there was a clinic in a town an hour away from me in a town called Mtwapa. Like a 'sexual productive' clinic that was targeting men who have sex with men, sex workers, etc. And they were very open about that. And then the community turned on them. Last year, I met one of the people who was at the forefront of this attack and they've made a total turnaround saying, "We acted on ignorance, these people are also a part of the community." These were Christian and Muslim faith leaders. And these same individuals are now engaging with other religious leaders to try and to ask them to be more accepting of the community so there is that. So for me, it's important that we recognize the good work that's been done, but also recognizing that we are far from out of the woods.

A key driver for me with my activism is to make sure that no one ever has to go through that feeling of loneliness as a queer person. No one has the right to go through that. No one. And I feel really sad when I hear of both the young and old killing themselves because of their sexuality. That shit should not be happening. That shit should not be happening anywhere in the world and should not be happening in Africa. I hope to work a lot more with young queer people, queer Africans, because I really want to show them and that it is possible to be black, African, and queer or just African.

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Kevin has recently been accepted into Amnesty International Kenya as their first openly gay board member. He has gone on to publish Invisible: Stories from Kenya's Queer Community, a collection of stories from Kenya's queer community, spoken at TEDx Programs and launced his own podcast Nipe Story (Tell me a Story).

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