AfroBeats the New African Sound
A new music genre has been taking the world by storm. From the western world to the eastern world, Afrobeats has been gaining traction and spreading across the globe. Afrobeast is very popular and chances are you have probably stumbled upon it even if you haven’t heard of the name.
Afrobeats originated in Nigeria and has been thriving since the early 90s. The genre really took off internationally with Drake’s 2016 hit One Dance which also featured the Nigerian artist known as Wizkid. Of course it didn’t just stop there seeing as to how Major US artists such as Ciara and Major Lazer incorporated Afrobeats into their music.
The Afrobeats has become widely successful and it looks like it will be here for the long run.
Afrobeats can be looked at as an international song, reason being, the style gets it’s sound from different influences around the globe. The style is connected to West African music, particularly highlife music. American Jazz and Funk are also added into to compound to form Afrobeats.
Afrobeats get’s it’s unique sound from many factors such as heavy percussion, complex rhythms, repeating vocals, and Pidgin English. It is no surprise that this genre of music is popular globally. The upbeat and energetic melodies get people jamming as soon as the hear the sound.
An often misunderstood fact is that Afrobeats and Afrobeat are different. Afrobeat is a highly political, non-commercial music whereas Afrobeats is global. This two can be easy to mix-up but they are worlds apart.
The music industry is a giagantic one with thousands of genres and many more artists. If you’re just starting up with Afrobeats, there are a few noteworthy artists that you can begin with.
Wizkid has become a world-wide sensation. His featuring in Drakes song One Dance boosted his career but far beyond that, his 2011 debut album Superstar acquired him instantiation recognition. His growth in popularity became clear in 2014 when he became the very first Nigerian musician to get above a million followers on Twitter. Today he is one of the most well-known Afrobeats artists, with the nickname Star Boy.
One of Nigeria’s top female Afrobeats singers is Tiwa Savage. As a singer who is famale, it was hard for Tiwa to gain popularity in a male-dominated music industry especially at the time. Tiwa tackled the issue and is now one of the female figure heads of Afrobeats. Tiwa even won Best African Act at the 2018 MTV Europe Music Awards.
In 2011 Davido released his debut album Omo Baba Owolo and quickly gained popularity. It didn’t just stop there. Davido then released his second second album The Baddest and won Best International Act at the BET Awards for both 2014 and 2018. Davido was also the first African artist to receive his award in person on the BET stage.
Some other note-worthy artists include Mr. Eazi, Burna Boy, Tekno, Burna Boy, and 2baba.
Future of Afrobeats:
Seeing the growing popularity of Afrobeats and Nigerian artists, Universal Music Group and Sony Music opened up offices in Lagos. There hopes are to sign local artist and turn them into global sensations.