Music
Photo: Bolaji Odukoya

Ice Prince.

The 7 Best Nigerian Songs of the Month (March)

Featuring Burna Boy, Ice Prince x Oxlade, Teni, DJ Tunez and more.

Here are the best, and most noteworthy, Nigerian tracks we had on repeat this month.

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


Ice Prince 'KOLO' feat. Oxlade

Ice Prince comes through with "Kolo," his new Edgar Boi-produced single featuring Oxlade. The alluring track follows Ice Prince rapping about a love that makes you go mad over afro-fusion beat work. "I'm talking about a girl that I fell in love with and I'm going crazy thinking about," he explains. "I can't stop thinking about her and getting her the best things in life, and how I want to make her my wife."

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Burna Boy '23'

Burna Boy has recently released the music video for "23" which features on his fifth studio album Twice As Tall which was released in August of last year. The music video is the second set of visuals shared by the Nigerian artist following "Onyeka" which dropped last month. Directed by Clarence Peters and produced by Skread, the music video makes a number of references to the legendary basketball player, Michael Jordan, while aptly celebrating diverse women at a time when Women's Month has just kicked off in the US.

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Peruzzi 'Somebody Baby' feat. Davido

Nigerian singer and songwriter, Peruzzi, has finally shared the visuals for his latest single "Somebody Baby" featuring Davido. The "Somebody Baby" music video comes ahead of Peruzzi's long-awaited album Rum & Boogie. The album reportedly features Tiwa Savage, Fireboy DML, Phyno, Patoranking, Don Jazzy and more.

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Teni 'WONDALAND' LP 

Buzzing Nigerian Teni the Entertainer has released her anticipated debut album WONDALAND via Platoon. The album follows a recent collaboration with Davido on the single "For You," which was an international success, and currently the number 1 song in Nigeria. This album, which was made across 7 cities, London, New York, Dubai, Orlando, Ondo, Lagos, and Abuja, in a span of two years, is a testament to Teni's dedication and attempt to reach new artistic heights.

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DJ Tunez x J. Anthoni 'Bomb'

Nigerian producer and Wizkid DJ Tunez comes through with the new 7-track EP, All You Need, which sees him connecting with the up-and-coming J. Anthoni. The standout here is lead single "Bomb," which showcases a pop-tint on this afro-dancehall fusion project. Get into the whole thing above.

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Yemi Alade features on Angelique Kidjo's 'Dignity'

Grammy award-winning singer, Angélique Kidjo, has released the stunning music video for "Dignity" featuring Yemi Alade. The song is an homage to the protestors of the #EndSARS movement last year—Nigeria's call to an end to police brutality. Kidjo and Alade have come together a year later after successfully collaborating on Alade's "Shekere". The "Dignity" music video is cinematic storytelling fitting for the message behind the song.

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Adekunle Gold, Patoranking 'Pretty Girl'

Adekunle Gold has recently shared the visuals for his "Pretty Girl" collaboration with fellow Nigerian artist, Patoranking. The track features on his 10-track Afro Pop, Vol.1 album which dropped last year. The new music video, which was directed by Olu The Wave, is a fun and vibrant conceptualisation of the song's energy and central message about a pretty girl who's admittedly put them under a spell.

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


Music

6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

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