Songs Of The Day: New Music From Ladipoe, Fireboy DML, Fasina and more

new music from around the continent

As the year winds down, the sheer number of music we receive at The NATIVE keeps growing at an exponential rate. With live shows back in full swing and Afropop hits such as Wizkid’s “Essence” and CKay’s “Love Nwantiti” climbing the charts both home and abroad, there has never been a more exciting time than the present for the ever-evolving sonic landscape. Through it all, we remain committed to the ideal of music discovery and sharing that is a big part of what we stand for.

That’s where our Songs of the Day column comes in. We’re doing the work to stay on pulse with all the music coming out from across the continent and beyond, bringing you exciting songs of tomorrow: today. Last time out, we had exciting music from Simi, Sarkodie, Timaya, and Buju amongst others. Today, we’re bringing you new music from Ladipoe, Reekado Banks, AV, Kemena, Fasina, Oma Mahmud and more. Tap in.

Ladipoe – “Running” ft. Fireboy DML

The last 18 months have been very important for Ladipoe. In the thick of the 2020 national lockdown, Ladipoe caught a break with his Simi-assisted “Know You” channeling the lustrous-but-lonesome energy of the times before a collab with Joeboy saw out the year in stunning fashion. This year has seen more success for the musician with his Buju-featuring single, Outside,” being one of the biggest singles of the year. The rapper is set to close out the year with an EP titled ‘Providence’ and he has portended the release of his sophomore project with another rap-sung collaboration. This time, he worked with YBNL singer, Fireboy DML, for “Running,” a single about moving on despite obstacles and limitations that situations can present. 

Reekado Banks – “Ozumba Mbadiwe”

The month of October will forever be one of the most significant months in the history of Nigeria, and it has little to do with independence. On October 20, 2020, officers of the Nigerian military opened fire on unarmed protesters, cruelly bringing an end to the peaceful #EndSARS protests. One year later, Nigerian pop singers are keeping the memory of the protests alive with incisive songs targeted at the government, and on Ozumba Mbadiwe,” his latest single, Reeekado Banks pays a powerful homage to the tragic killings w hile weaving a story of grind and seeking love. On the song’s potent second half, he pointedly sings, “October 20, 2020, something happen with the government, they think say we forget, for where.”

AV – “Confession”

Earlier this year, AV broke through with his ubiquitous single, “Big Thug Boys,” moving from the hypervisibility of TikTok videos to a spot at the pinnacle of radio plays and streaming numbers. His newest single, “Confession,” a guitar-led ballad takes influences from Bollywood sonic, with the singer settling into the grooving instrumental with his typically melodious lyricism while buffering his verses with a rotation of lambas and slurred flows primed to give the song a grungy feel.

Kemena – “Vowel Sounds”

Last year, alt-pop singer, Kemena, released one of the year’s most euphonious albums with ‘Bond,’ his debut album that segued from expressions of love to candid observations of his life from songs like “International” and “Inugo.” On his latest single, “Vowel Sounds,” the singer crafts a single about reading meaning into a love interest’s words with the song’s tagline going “She’s making vowel sounds like a,e,i,ou but what she really means is I love you.” Once again, Kemena proves himself a master of melody. 

Eugy – “Osu Freestyle” ft. Medikal

Ghanaian-British artist Eugy has joined forces with Accra hip-hop talent Medikal on the new single “Osu Freestyle,” a single off his upcoming debut headline show in London. Combining a hard-hitting production with Eugy’s distinct bars and Medikal’s rapid-fire flow, the new single packs a serious punch from their unfettered eccentricity. The official video, which features both artists making moves in the bando, communicates this energy in visual form. It follows the release of the “My Touch” remix package, which featured reworks from artists such as Medikal, Kwesi Arthur, Busy Signal and Chivv and also included an NFT drop.

Pearl Cardy – “Far”

In one life, Pearl Cardy is a respected on-air personality with thousands of fans who love her much-followed song countdowns on SoundCity but in another life, she is an artist on the rise with her 2020 debut single, “Wait,” introducing fans to the singing aspect of her creativity. Pearl’s latest single, “Far” is caught from the same material as “Wait.” Riding a wavy instrumental made up primarily of drum loops, Pearl pours out her heart about always wanting a love interest despite any restrictions that might be in the way of their romance. 

Titose – “Forest”

Hailing from Botswana, Titose sings with a swaying sense of ease, gently weaving her voice around weighty emotions with the poise of a veteran. Titose is scheduled to put out her first project ‘Was It Something I Said’ in November and leading up to the drop, she has been putting out a couple of songs. Her latest, “Forest,” sees her emote over a sombre instrumental attuned to her spry voice, with the message being that she will do what it takes to make a relationship work. 

Oma Mahmud – “Money Problems”

Blending elements of rock and afrobeat into his infectious alternative sound, Oma Mahmud is one of the most innovative musicians operating in Nigeria. He’s also among the most consistent musicians of his generation with projects like ‘Pink’ and ‘Rockstvr’ showing the depths of his capabilities.

His latest project, ‘For The Love Of Women and Country’ blurs the lines between the personal and the communal, but it is on standout track, “Money Problems,” that he attempts a playful critique of the capitalist framework, pointing out the inequalities that such a strong reliance on money foster on us as a people. At the end of the day, Mahmud aims the withering eyes of his critique at the government, pointing out that “all this things, na government cause am.”

Fasina – “Elevated”

The music that Fasina has put out this year has had very specific messaging attached to it. On ‘Love and Grief’, his February-released four-track EP, the singer narrated relatable stories about the highs and lows of his life in his uniquely laidback style. On his latest single, “Elevated,” that laidback style is complimented with a trappy flow as the singer talks about the changes in his life and the positives that come with it. 

Featured image credits/Instagram