Update your playlist; Latest African Music Videos 2017

Hey!

It’s been a while since I shared the latest African music videos so now that we are almost done with February this would be a perfect time to  have you update your playlist as we start off a new month. (I know! I know! One more day to March but because I can…why not?)These ones are the ones that I am currently obsessing on (videos to be precise…some of these audios I am still not so sure about). Be sure to check them out and then let me know what you think about them.

Yemi Alade, Mi Casa- Get Through This

 

When two power houses such as Yemi and Mi Casa come together you know it’s explosive, which is exactly what this jam is, just in a mellow way and I am perfectly OK with that.

Mimi Mars- Shuga

I will be doing an entire review of this particular song and video so for now, I won’t say much but watch out for that to know what exactly I think about this song.

Rosa Ree- Up in the air

I unfortunately decided to watch this video as soon as it dropped on my phone next to my 10 year old niece and now I just wish I was more patient in life especially because the video is already titled “Explicit”. That said, Tanzania is one of those countries in Africa that has such heavy weight Hip Hop artists that in my opinion are unshakeable but I can tell you for sure that they need to watch out for this girl.(You can quote me)

P.S: Am I the only one who thinks that Rosa Ree is such a soft name for such a hard core   type of artist?

Eddy Kenzo- Jubilation

I love the fact that I could be in the worst of moods but listen to an Eddy Kenzo song and then find myself smiling right after. Also, if you are a Ugandan artist or if you know any, thank this guy for paving the way for you.

Eugy- don Corleone

 

I could listen to Eugy all the day long- always fresh and his voice!….Good Lawd! *sighs*  Plus how good does this video look?…

Maleek Berry- 4 Me

 

There’s something about music producers turned artists that gives them an edge over every other artist out there. Probably because they have an understanding of the different dynamics of music and if you still don’t get I mean, Maleek Berry, Tekno Miles and Nahreel are just a few perfect examples of what I’m talking about.

GNAKO Ft Jux- Go Low

 

Each day, I fall in love more with Luffa ‘s work.This isn’t your average Bongo kind of song and I like an unpredictable tune that keeps things fresh and interesting.

 

 

My top 5 picks; Best African Rappers

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I think spitting rhymes was one of those things that our forefathers did just after a hunting session, as they carried the day’s meal home. Seriously, think about it…”Yoh! My name is Onkule the great, the man in charge of today’s fate, cause all I do is catch that prey and  make sure that my fam is fed”(drops mic)…  no?

I don’t know about you but I would personally rather listen to an artist that sings or raps  in a language that I don’t understand, but has me getting at least 70% of the words (or at least have me thinking that I am getting it). That for me is way better than someone who sings/ raps in a language that I understand and yet never making sense of what exactly they are singing/ rapping about.

While there are plenty of African Hip Hop artists that I would have on my list, these ones have consistently proven themselves over time, with a unique style that makes them uncontested pace setters.

K.O

k-o-image-courtesy-of-ctvibes-com
K.O (Image courtesy of ctvibes.com)

 

He defines his music as Skhanda Music.  Simply put, “vernacular poetry over authentic South African Hip- Hop beats that are driven by traditional elements.” 

 

Besides being effortlessly smooth with his lyrics, K.O is one of the very few artists that  I wouldn’t care as much to listen to, because I wouldn’t understand what he would be going on and on about (considering he often raps in his native language).  And yet still, I find myself straining to get his flow.  They say that music is a universal language, but it takes an exceptionally talented artist to wow a foreign audience.

 

 

King Kaka

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King Kaka (Image courtesy of bursarts.wordpress.com)

 

To be honest, when he first started out, I knew he was good but did not think he would last long in Kenya’s rap scene.

For me, King Kaka lacked that “umph” that made other top rappers in the country (at that point in time) successful.

He has however proven me wrong over and over again and I am glad he did. His poetic style fused with his being a great story teller more than anything else makes him the timeless rapper that would have me tirelessly listen to him all day, any day.

 

 

 

Muthoni Drummer Queen

MDQ sought to explore Hip Hop upon realization that she had a lot to say and this was the only genre she could use to express herself with as many words as possible, unlike with singing whose structure is limiting

 

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MDQ (Image courtesy of mx3.ch)

She is bold and embraces her art fully for what it is- a platform to explore and discover. Creativity has a whole new meaning thanks to MDQ, who isn’t just about having great lyrical flow, but making sense with every dropped bar. Certainly a refreshing approach to a genre that was initially used purely reserved for entertainment, especially in Kenya.

Sarkodie

sarkodie-image-courtesy-of-ghanamusicbank-com

Best International Act in the African category at the 2012 BET Awards,  Sarkodie has got to be one of the best all time rappers of Africa.

He often raps in his native language (which again would have me thinking I could be doing something more meaningful with my life other than trying to figure out what he could possibly be rapping about).

However, his commanding presence leaves me no choice than to stop whatever it is that I am doing and to pay attention. And here is the thing about Sarkodie,  I cannot count the number of times after listening to him I’ve thought “Darn! that was so good I have to listen to it again.”- that ladies and gentlemen is a powerful artist.

 

Joh Makini

joh-makini-image-courtesy-of-musicians4africa-com
Joh Makini (Image courtesy of musiciansforafrica.com)

 

I can’t think of anyone’s lyrics that are as fresh and well thought like Joh Makini’s .

He unlike most modern day rappers does conscious music other than strive to be musically correct or sell hype, which constantly has him on my radar and looking forward to what he would have to offer next.

A Hip Hop pioneer that has remained true to what attracted people to his style of music, he doesn’t call himself a Swahili rap king for nothing.

 

 

 

 

 

Did your best African rappers make it to my list?

Vote or/and drop me a comment below and let me know.

Behind Uganda’s Creative Music Director- Hassan Bahemuka’s Camera

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Hassan Bahemuka  (right), (Image courtesy of Joni Musi)

Hassan Kintu Bahemuka  is a Ugandan Creative Music Video Director and an entrepreneur running Hasz Media. Not only is he the name behind top Ugandan Music Videos, but boasts of several nominations and awards including the prestigious MTV Africa and  Nigeria’s Soundcity Awards.  I got the rare chance of interviewing him (something he admittedly avoids, and this is how it all went down)

How did you get into music video directing?

It started during one of my Form 6 school breaks. I was editing footage  from my brother’s video library;  events and weddings to be specific. A friend realized my talent and had me join Uganda’s WBS TV. I worked at WBS for 5 years, making my way up to be the head of production, before calling it quits to go do my own thing. Video director Don Mugisha (Deddac) played an important role in my journey by providing mentor-ship.

From weddings and events to TV and then finally settling for music videos, why so?

Besides directing music videos being a passion, I love the creativity that it allows room for. Being a creative music video director also provides great exposure for one’s brand and is financially rewarding.

What has been the highlight of your career so far?

Being nominated for Nigeria’s Soundcity Awards for the best pop video in Africa Category for Toniks’ Nzewuwo. For a low budget video to be competing against videos that had a budget of up to 20 thousand US dollars and shot by Africa’s best video directors was and will remain to be such a memorable and humbling experience.

Sometime back, you were alleged to be wanted by cops for having conned an upcoming Ugandan artist. Tell us your side of the story..

An employee of mine under my company- Hasz Media had taken money from an artist without my knowledge. Once I found out, I tried to resolve the issue by talking to the artist in question, but things took a different turn. Because my employee had taken money under my company’s name, I had to take the heat for it. The issue was however finally resolved.

Which creative video directors do you look up to?

In Africa, Nigeria’s Sesan, while internationally, I look up to Canadian Music Video Director, Director X  .I am always watching out for their work.

What challenges do you face as a video director?

Budgeting. Every artist has a different budget for their music videos, depending on their individual financial ability. I however have to deliver and to ensure quality and consistency in the standard of my work, irrespective of an artist’s budget.

If you weren’t in the entertainment business, what would you be doing?

Farming,  which is something that I actually do on the side. I own a 14 acre piece of land that I use purely for farming.

Final words for any aspiring video director out there?

Work on building your brand and don’t be fooled by the hype.

 

Check out the latest video that Hassan has worked on;

 

You can also check out other music videos directed by Hassan on his YouTube Channel,

https://www.youtube.com/user/Haszmedia/featured