Last week, Ghanaian rapper Ko-jo Cue released his latest album, ‘For My Brothers’, a 15-track project, Ko-jo tackles generational failures with purpose, unpacking various shades of trauma while urging young people to do better for the sake of the next generation. The project is an excellent combination of honest lyricism, great production and impressive features.
On standout track, “Smiling”, Ko-jo features Lady Donli and Show Dem Camp, the only non-Ghanaian artists on the project. The song is an example of the musical cross-pollination that has occurred between Nigeria and Ghana in the last five decades, with its groovy, highlife-inspired beat mirroring sounds all three artists have played around with in recent times.
Subverting the serious topics Ko-jo explores on his album, “Smiling” is a hustler’s anthem with a light-hearted edge. Lady Donli sings the infectious hook in a helium-pitched, echoing the same poverty-rebuking ideals of her debut album, ‘Enjoy Your Life’. Ko-jo, Tec and Ghost take turns delivering rapped verses, reiterating their drive to keep getting money.
Listen to “Smiling” here.
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