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The 13 Best Nigerian Songs of the Month

Featuring Runtown, Santi, DJ Tunez, Asa, Olamide, Kah-Lo, Skepta and more.

Read ahead for our selection of the best Nigerian songs of March.

For more Nigerian hits, follow our NAIJA HITS playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.


DJ Tunez 'Gbsese' feat. Wizkid & Blaqjerzee + 'Causing Trouble' feat. Oxlade

Frequent collaborators DJ Tunez and Wizkid link up for their latest "Gbese" featuring Blaqjerzee, and we must say it's one of our favorites."Gbese" is a breezy banger that sees Wizkid flexing his vocals throughout the mellow track. Oxlade is in fine form on "Causing Trouble" contrasting the hook's feathery falsetto with afropop "stank" in the hook and verses elsewhere on a steady marimba embellish backbeat.

Olamide "Oil & Gas" 

Both of Olamide's releases for May rely on the house production he used to good effect on "Woske," his previous major release. "Oil & Gas" utilises call & response for structure and musicality while "No" sees the Nigerian artist pinning for a love interest with good humour—"reasons why I love you is uncountable / you dey show me different things more than my cable"—and delivering an easy, sing-along hook.

Asa 'The Beginning'

A plaintive, unhurried piano ushers in Asa's mourning of a relationship—"so when you said goodbye with a smile on your face / I thought it was as usual / you'll be gone for just a little while"—but the loss may be lasting despite her wish to start all over. Additions of strings and drums build to a cathartic crescendo but the much needed relief is for variety from the artist, for "The Beginning" is simply decent and many expect genius from Asa.

Yung6ix x Peruzzi 'What If'

The unmistakable delight of a recorded live guitar and saxophone benefits from a fitting hook from Peruzzi and well-judged verses from Yung6ix, who remains an articulate and attentive rapper. Here, he gets quality support from an expert hook man and a continuing evolving producer in Fresh DVM.

Nonso Amadi ft. Kwesi Arthur 'Comfortable'

Nonso Amadi is an even more interesting singing personality when he subverts his sweet voice and mild manners as is true on "Don't Make Me Love You" and his brilliant verse on Santi's "Freaky." On his new single, he warns a lover against complacency—"you only have me for one night / don't get too comfortable."

Naira Marley x Zlatan 'Am I A Yahoo Boy'

Blatant courting of Nigeria's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission was not going to go unnoticed and has led to Naira Marley and his cohorts to be arraigned before Nigerian courts. The beat is a delight, and while Marley is a strong individual presence, tag-teaming with Zlatan adds even more relevance and gusto to a song and ever topical subject matter.

Skepta 'Bullet From A Gun'

The picture Skepta paints in his new single is a chilling realisation of possessing even more powers in himself (or one's self) than that which the first flush of success has brought on. "I found my way home / then I saw my granddad's name on the gravestone, the same as mine / already dead, nothing to fear / I been here from time / Chief SK sipping on Palm Wine." The emotional and existential benefits of a return to his ancestral home in Nigeria is deepened by rediscovering a lineage with dead ancestors and the conference of a traditional title.

D'Prince Ft Rema 'Lavida'

On "Lavida," Rema—a convincing new talent—gives boost to a proven solo star in D'Prince, while in turn benefitting bags of goodwill built over the last two decades of Nigerian pop by Mavins and Mo Hits Records. Over a steady syncopated backbeat, Rema sings and slurs, shedding much of the Wizkid influence in the afropop songs on his self-titled EP before Prince reminds us of his star status, as they both bring new fizz to a flat and overused Spanish phrase.

Patoranking 'Temperature' + 'Go Crazy' + 'Black' feat. Busiswa

Ignore "Lenge Lenge" the Fela-bait that is the touted first single from Patoranking's new sophomore album, Wilmer, and look to "Temperature" for lean and effective dancehall, "Go Crazy" for feverish soca, "Black" for authoritative spoken word sermonising and "Open Fire"—featuring the ever formidable Busiswa—over a brilliantly boisterous house beat by Sarz. Wilmer improves upon the gumbo of genres Patoranking displayed on G.O.E his 2016 debut album since which he's established himself as a human synthesiser to which few compare.

Kah-Lo 'Give Dem' Diplo, 'Ballie' with Idris Elba, 'Spice' with Michael Brun

Kah-lo is queening this May with three topnotch collaborations with superstar DJs. First up is "Ballie" featuring Idris Elba who she vaunts as the "hottest DJ in the world right now," then Diplo over whose nocturnal beat she celebrates house parties on "Give Dem" from his Higher Ground EP. Kah-lo rightly brings the attention back to herself on the standoffish and self-celebratory "Spice" with Haitian producer and DJ Michael Brun.

Santi 'Raining Outside' + "Diamonds / Where Have You Been' feat. Seki

Taken from Mandy & The Jungle, the much anticipated follow up to Santi's influential 2016 debut Suzie's Funeral, "Diamonds / Where Have Have You Been?" is either two songs tacked as one or a two-part suite shared with Seki and best represents the sensible choice of collaborations on the album. "Raining Outside" is one of seven songs out of 16 that are sung solo and allow more berth for his often mercurial vocal abilities.

Runtown 'Emotions'

"Emotions" is one gem among the 6 songs that make up Tradition, the new EP by Runtown. The key would appear to be Spellz' delightful beat which matches to Runtown's well proven songwriting abilities.

Rotimi 'Summertime' + 'Sip Slow'

Two standouts from Walk With Me, the new EP by actor-musician Rotimi, whose buttery R&B chops impress over the twinkling and playful beat of "Summertime," even more than they do on "Love Riddim," whose afropop approximations are avoided on "Sip Slow," despite the reliance on a dembow beat.


For more Nigerian hits, follow our NAIJA HITS playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.



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Asa's 'Lucid" album cover

Asa Releases Her Highly-Anticipated New Album, 'Lucid'

Listen to the celebrated Nigerian singer's first album in five years.

After a five year hiatus Asa, one of Nigeria's most celebrated artists, has released her fourth studio album Lucid.

The 14-track album, includes the previously released singles "Good Thing" and "The Beginning" which the singer dropped earlier this year to positive reviews.

The singer and songwriter took to social media to thank fans for their ongoing support over the weekend, writing "I have looked forward to sharing this with you for sometime now but I wanted it to be special, that much I owe you. For being with me from the beginning, thank you from my soul. I hope this makes you happy, brings you joy and somehow, you can find yourself in these songs."

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Aisha Mustapha, is a 15-year-old student from Nigeria, using her voice to tell her own story. The young writer recently penned a graphic novel about her experience fleeing Boko Haram, locating her family and trying to further her education. It's a heavy subject, obviously, but with her graphic novel, she offers a voice for young people directly affected by the crisis in Northern Nigeria.

The book was published today to mark the International Day of the Girl, a day established by the United Nations in 2011 to "highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face, while promoting girls' empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights."

Aisha's talent for storytelling has previously been highlighted in Assembly, a by-girls-for-girls publication by the Malala Fund that brought Aisha's graphic novel to life, premiering it today in conjunction with International Day of the GIrl. Tess Thomas, Assembly's editor, elaborated on the purpose of the publication saying, "We believe in the power of girls' voices to generate change. Our publication provides girls with a platform so their opinions and experiences can inform decisions about their futures."

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It took the author Lemn Sissay almost two decades to learn his real name. As an Ethiopian child growing up in England's care system, his cultural identity was systematically stripped from him at an early age. "For the first 18 years of my life I thought that my name was Norman," Sissay tells OkayAfrica. "I didn't meet a person of color until I was 10 years of age. I didn't know a person of color until I was 16. I didn't know I was Ethiopian until I was 16 years of age. They stole the memory of me from me. That is a land grab, you know? That is post-colonial, hallucinatory madness."

Sissay was not alone in this experience. As he notes in his powerful new memoir My Name Is Why, during the 1960s, tens of thousands of children in the UK were taken from their parents under dubious circumstances and put up for adoption. Sometimes, these placements were a matter of need, but other times, as was the case with Sissay, it was a result of the system preying on vulnerable parents. His case records, which he obtained in 2015 after a hardfought 30 year campaign, show that his mother was a victim of child "harvesting," in which young, single women were often forced into giving their children up for adoption before being sent back to their native countries. She tried to regain custody of young Sissay, but was unsuccessful.

Whether they end up in the foster system out of need or by mistake, Sissay says that most institutionalized children face the same fate of abuse under an inadequate and mismanaged system that fails to recognize their full humanity. For black children who are sent to white homes, it often means detachment from a culturally-sensitive environment. "There are too many brilliant people that I know who have been adopted by white parents for me to say that it just doesn't work," says Sissay. "But the problem is the amount of children that it doesn't work for."

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Cameroonian-born singer-songwriter Laetitia Tamko, better known as her stage name Vagabon, has been spoiling us with delights as of late. First, the crooner teased us with two singles, "Flood" and "Water Me Down" from her forthcoming sophomore album, Vagabon, a work she wrote and produced herself. And today, she surprised us with a new single and video for "Every Woman"—a track Tamko claims is the "thesis of the album," as per a press statement reported by The Fader magazine

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