Haha meant to publish this friday
I think I was linked to this song based on an article about political music in Africa. This song details the frustration and despair people in Nigeria feel towards their political situation. The standout to me here was Nneka, her voice was powerful and soulful. The rest of the song was effective at communicating its message, but not much more. The beat was clichéd for this kind of rap, and Bantu didn’t really stand out to me.
So I looked into more of Nneka’s music, and I found this amazing song. This album was produced when she moved to Germany from Nigera, and the production value is stronger. Because this song is hers, she can really show off her voice, her range of vocal talents, and her range are really put on display, and are impressive. She hasn’t sold out by going to Europe either, she still tackles the issues of frustration and despair that exist in Africa. The subject matter is very dark, and if I have any criticism it is that the lyrics are a bit mismatched with the more upbeat reggae-inspired instrumentals.
Cardinal Rex Lawson – 3 different songs
Cardinal Rex Lawson was a leading figure as decolonization was taking place in Nigeria. His music spoke to the general wave of freedom that took over, as well as the social and ethnic issues that his nation would face. If you like this, which you should, check out highlife, the genre that he was the master of.
Modern West-African music obviously also has a pop element to it. Azonto is the dance dejour of the early 2010s and this song shows you how its done. Colorful, joyful, and modern, its very awesome. And if you can work out how to do that dance well, you will probably be able to get laid on demand, so that’s nice. Also see Wizkid’s take, which is also great, but feels too sanitized compared to Fuse’s version.
P-Square isn’t from Nigeria, or Ghana where Azonto comes from, so when he made a foray into the genre he turned some heads. I chose Alingo to play for you to prevent azonto from completely taking over. P-Square is making a very modern, club-oriented product, and the music video combines the lovely african fascination with leather culture and a fun up-beat club aesthetic.
Now for something completely different
I have sung the praises of 20Syl before, and the rest of this post will continue that. Previously 20Syl was known to me as a producer, but it turns out the guy and rap as well. I cannot understand French, but he has a solid flow, and the production is top notch, of course.
So 20Syl started out as a founder of C2C, a french turntablist crew. They stay very true to the rap hip-hop side of scratching and mixing, not really getting into more electric stuff, like an A-Track or someone like that. This put together a really nice 30+ minute mix here, anyone with an appreciation for rap will love this, everything you know from it is primo, and anything you don’t know, we’ll you’ll be glad you do when its all over.
So 20Syl is/was also part of a group, Hocus Pocus, that focused on jazz-influenced rap. Now I LOVE jazz, and I love a well produced rap song. Seeing that I think 20Syl is a filthy producer, it should be clear that I am all over this project. I chose Zoo up there because I love this celebratory feel, the horn section, I don’t need to know French to be happy when this song comes on. But Hocus Pocus made a lot of really fun songs.