Contest

LargeUp News: Walshy Fire & PBS Want Your Senegalese Riddims

Create a riddim beat using the Senegalese Kora for a chance to win a free SoundCloud Pro Unlimited Account and a placement on a Mad Decent EP.


For all you Reason heads, Logic Pro’s & Ableton aficionados out there, a MAJOR opportunity has arisen. Major Lazer frontman Walshy Fire has called ya’ll out in hopes of hearing the hottest innovative sounds from producers all over the globe. PBS’ online series Beat Making Lab teamed up w/ the hit maker to issue a #SenegalChallenge, asking any and all creators to flip a kora sample of their choosing and turn it into a dope riddim beat. The winner will receive a SoundCloud Pro Unlimited Account, a meeting w/ Walshy Fire, and a placement on a Mad Decent EP amongst other things. Wanna know more? Peep the contest rules and check out what the homies at LargeUp had to say down below.

Why dancehall made with a kora? Senegal is the latest Beat Making Lab (which brings mini, portable studios to urban centers around the world to train youth in the art of beatmaking) site, and some ladies there already made a pretty cool riddim using a sample of a kora. Now, Beat Making Lab, Soundcloud and Mad Decent want beatmakers from around the world to try their hand at the same thing, with the best tracks to be featured on an upcoming EP from the Mal Dicen, Latino Resiste and ARTVSM labels. (Previous contests/releases include a set of trap beats all made from a Panamanian accordion sample.) And that’s where A&R in-charge Walshy comes in.

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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