New Music Friday: Projects from Bob Marley, T.I BLAZE, Oshunda & More

new music for the weekend

It’s another Friday and time for a roundup of music projects from African acts to check out. Throughout the week, music has poured in from all over the continent and sometimes it can slip through the cracks, unheard. This column serves to bring those projects to your ears as you prepare for the end of work and look forward to the weekend. Settle in for an experience as we travel the African continent for the latest music projects.


In celebration of the life and music of the Reggae legend Bob Marley, some of Africa’s biggest stars were called to add their unique touch to Marley’s classics. The result is ‘Africa Unite,’ which features Tiwa Savage, Oxlade, Rema, Teni, Sarkodie, Ayra Starr and Ami Faku, among others. The posthumous project is a reminder of Marley’s legacy as well as the hard work African artists have invested in their craft to get the continent the recognition it enjoys.


‘Dangerous Wavy Baby’ is T.I BLAZE’s third project, following 2022’s ‘The Fresh Prince of Lagos’ and ‘El Major.’ Sonically and thematically, ‘Dangerous Wavy Baby’ is similar to those projects as T.I BLAZE stylises topics of self-determination and enjoying the good life on Afro-fusion. The seven-track project features Lojay, Mr Eazi, Balloranking and Magixx.


Erstwhile DMW signee Dremo delivers ‘NO PRESSURE,’ a new project with the backing of American music label EMPIRE. The rapper and singer touches on love, societal prejudices, and finding and believing in oneself. On “Doyin,” he pleads with a lover, and on “PESIN,” he, Jerry Shaffer and DJ Yk Mule stir an Amapiano party. In all, ‘NO PRESSURE’ is a tidy body of work.


Lagos is a fertile ground for ideas to sprout into excellent creations, whether in film, literature or music. With Amapiano-influenced soundscape, music producer and artist Elow-T seeks the artistic parts of Lagos for ‘Lagos Labs,’ a five-track EP featuring Falz, Seun Kuti, Vector and Rukmani, among others. “Come along as we take you through the city of Lagos, we’ll show you the good, the bad, and everything in between,” he announces. “From the bustling markets to the chaotic traffic, from the vibrant nightlife to the struggles of everyday life, we’ll give you an inside look at what it’s really like to live in this incredible city.”


On the cover of Oshunda’s ‘Monster Villa’ is a secluded house sitting on an elevated spot with the project’s title scribbled in sharp red. The imagery contrasts the music it carries, though. ‘Monster Villa’ contains rich, groovy tunes where Oshunda digs into the psyche of a person as they love, trust or fail. A native of Ghana, Oshunda is one of the emerging names in the alternative music scene.


Ugandan duo, Kataleya & Kandle have released their EP ‘Call It Love,’ where they mine music from depths of affection and romance. With production from Nessim Pan and mixing and mastering duties from Anel Tunes, the duo find the sweet spot for relatable songs, merging Swahili and English, and complementing each other’s contributions across the project. ‘Call It Love’ features Barnaba, B2c and Country Wizzy. 


Rising Nigerian artist Maradona unveils his skills on the project ‘FOB.’ The EP follows his 2021 EP ‘Rodman.’ Juggling rapping and singing, Maradona spins love-themed songs as well as tough talk on ‘FOB,’ merging genres with his energetic brand of Afrobeats.  He’s about his money on “Mac & Cheese,” devotes his attention to his lover on “No” and minds the business that pays him on “IDC.”

Featured image credits/NATIVE