Audio

South African Rapper Sam Turpin Blends Nature And Ambient Hip-Hop In 'Mafunde'

Sam Turpin drops the mellow, ambient hip-hop single "Mafunde," which blends atmospheric sounds and soft piano melodies.


Experimental Johannesburg rapper Sam Turpin has dropped his latest ambient hip-hop track "Mafunde." The South African MC, who teamed up with DJ Spoko earlier this year, spoke to us about the new project stating, "About a year ago my laptop crashed and I lost all of my programs and presets. 'Mafunde' was the first track I made after the start up. I wanted it to sound like waves crashing on a shoreline followed by the backwash. The lyrics are quite different though, they're about a girl I met but who got away before I could tell her how I felt. I met her during the summer when I lost my programs so that how it all got tied together." The mystified sounds and soft piano melodies of the single allude to nature and the ocean, while Sam's calm voice is nearly drowned out by the surrounding atmospherics that consume the song. For more from the emerging artist, watch him bike through a dreamlike park in the recent video for "Alexandrie." Stream"Mafunde," the first release off an upcoming Sam Turpin project due later this year, below.

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.

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