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'Pop Star' album cover

Yanga Chief 'Pop Star' album cover. 'Pop Star' is set to be released on 27 November 2020

Yanga Chief Releases Politically-Charged Single 'Manelo'

Yanga Chief's 'Manelo' pays homage to a deferred political dream and drops ahead of his upcoming album, 'Pop Star'.

Award-winning rapper Yanga Chief has has dropped new single "Manelo" from his upcoming album titled Pop Star. This single follows the hit single "BBAF" which celebrates sexy women and the club lifestyle. "Manelo" is a stark contrast from "BBAF" in that it is a sobering critical review of recent South African political events. Yanga Chief makes use of strong lyricism over a trippy hip-hop beat––a surefire combination.


Read: Interview: Yanga Chief, South Africa's Most Reluctant Pop Star, Is Starting A New Chapter

The Xhosa rapper is well-known for making culturally relevant music borrows from a classic South African pop song. "We Miss You Manelo" by Chicco Twala was the song of the 90s and spoke of individuals who went missing during Apartheid. Yanga Chief laments the current political events where politicians have marred the young dreams that many "Manelos" died for. Bars are consistently dropped and Yanga Chief does not hold back. "Manelo" has a somber feel and one that allows the listener to become quite reflective about the song's subject matter.

The track is smooth with slow drum beats carrying Yanga Chiefs raw raps. The hook is catchy just like the 90s original except it hits differently this time––deeper and more introspective. "Manelo" is a solo conversation in the psyche of born-frees who have been left disappointed by the current government. Yanga Chief, in this latest project, continues to show his unique penmanship in a way his fans are sure to appreciate.

Pop Star is slated for release on November 27th and is available for pre-order.

Listen to "Manelo" on Apple Music:

Listen to "Manelo" on Spotify:

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(YouTube)

The Best Amapiano Songs Out Right Now

Featuring Aymos, Uncle Vinny, Blaqnick & MasterBlaq, 2woBunnies, Balcony Mix Africa, and more

It's only been few weeks in and 2023 is already promising to be one of the most impactful years for amapiano internationally.

The recent announcements of Uncle Waffles and Major League DJz being billed to play at Coachella and Tomorrowland, respectively, earmarks the continuing steady rise of amapiano on the global stage. Drake (who recently likened listening to Kelvin Momo’s music to a religious experience) included some ‘piano tracks in his DJ set at a listening session in NYC. After its introduction to the festival last year, Afrochella’s Piano People stage is also heading to Miami this coming May with the likes of Focalistic, Musa Keys, Vigro Deep and TxC expected to perform.

With that said, we introduce our monthly round-up, solely dedicated to amapiano. Here are the amapiano songs and music videos that caught our attention this month.

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Music
Image via Sheila Afari PR/Bongeziwe Mabandla.

The Best South African Songs Out Right Now

Featuring Bongeziwe Mabandla, Sjava, Tyla, Blxckie, Msaki, AKA x Khuli Chana, and more

Here are the South African music videos and new songs that caught our attention this month.

For more music lists, check out our Songs You Need to Hear This Week roundups and our regional monthly lists for Nigeria, Ghana, and East Africa.

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Film
Photo Credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Idris Elba Wants to Build a Film Studio In Tanzania

Renowned British actor Idris Elba is planning to open up a film studio in Tanzania, reports say.

Celebrated British actor Idris Elba is planning to open a film studio in Tanzania. The news was revealed by Tanzania's Director of Presidential Communications, Zuhura Yunus, during a press conference. According to Yunus, the plan for the studio was set in motion during Elba's meeting with President Samia Suluhu Hassan at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.


“Discussions on the project have just begun, and if successful, the project will help not only Tanzania but also Eastern and Central Africa,” said Yunus.

In the past, Elba, who is also an award-winning actor, filmmaker and musician, has made concerted efforts to be involved in, and contribute to the African entertainment industry. In the past, he has featured on songs with prominent African artists like D'banj, Drizilik, and Phyno, among others. Although he is a celebrated Hollywood actor, Elba has always stayed connected to the motherland and has made several efforts to represent his own Sierra Leonean and Ghanaian roots.

In an interview with South Africa's SA People News in 2022, the British movie star mentioned that he wants to shoot more films in Africa, as well as contribute in building and developing the future of the African film industry.

“Young Africans view me as a leader or a beacon. And I feel like I could bring something. So I’m keen to bring what I’ve learned in media and amplify it in Africa,” the Beast actor said at the time.

During the interview, the actor also mentioned that the continent deserved "real tender care."

“I’m really keen on the development of Africa. My parents come from Africa and more than anywhere in the world, I feel like that continent deserves some real tender care and love and thought.

Elba has historically represented Africa in powerful rooms that he has walked into

During the US-Africa Leaders Summit’s; Africa Digital Innovation Competitors event, he did not hesitate to place the importance of the African entertainment market at the forefront of his conversation.

“If there are any investors listening or watching today if you do not consider Africa as a viable investment, you’re not considering yourself or your future. Africa’s future is your own future and vice versa,” said Elba at the time.“We do not need aid anymore, we need innovation. We need partnership,” he added.

While there are no new updates on the move to build the studio in Tanzania, it seems as though the process is underway.

Music

The Best Ghanaian Songs Out Right Now

Featuring Sarkodie, Shatta Wale, Bisa Kdei, Darkovibes, Kelvyn Boy, and more.

We’re at the top of a brand new year, and you know what that means: brand new music!.Our favorite Ghanaian artists have already begun to stir things up with brand new tunes. From history-making collaborations to drill posse cuts, we bring you all the new heat from Ghana. Check out our picks of the best Ghana music of the month below.

For more music lists, check out our Songs You Need to Hear This Week roundups and our regional monthly lists for Nigeria, South Africa, and East Africa.

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