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Afrobeat Artists

Source: Burak Cingi, Robert Okine, Joseph Okpako / Getty

Afrobeats sounds and influences have risen in popularity in the United States, progressively dominating the country’s airwaves over the last several years. According to Jazzhistorytree, Afrobeat emerged in the 1960s and 1970s as a fusion of traditional Yoruba music, jazz, West African music (Highlife, Fuji), and funk. Afrobeat was established by Fela Kuti, a Nigerian superstar known for his musical talent and engagement in post-colonial African politics.

The genre is steadily growing all around the world with new waves of emerging artists and international collaborations that top the charts.

Here are 8 Afrobeat artists we can’t get enough of!

 

Tems

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Temilade Openiyi, better known as Tems, is a Nigerian singer-songwriter and record producer. She gained to notoriety after appearing on Wizkid’s 2020 song, “Essence,” which hit the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 upon the release of a remixed version with an extra feature from Justin Bieber and won her a Grammy Award nomination. The following year, she was featured on Drake’s song “Fountains” which was an international hit. Tems is set to be presented with the BMI Impact Award at the 2022 BMI London Awards, which will be held on October 3.

 

Burna Boy

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Burna Boy is a Nigerian singer, songwriter, and record producer born Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu. He shot to fame in 2012 with the release of “Like to Party,” the first single off his debut studio album, L.I.F.E. (2013). Burna Boy signed with Bad Habit/Atlantic Records in the United States and Warner Music Group worldwide in 2017. His most recent collaboration with Ed Sheeran has already surpassed 900,000 views on YouTube.

 

Wizkid

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Wizkid (Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun) is a Nigerian singer and songwriter. Wizkid began his music career at a very young age. He secured a record deal with Banky W’s Empire Mates Entertainment in 2009. His fourth studio album, Made in Lagos, was certified Gold in the United States on Monday, August 29th, 2022, according to Vanguard.

 

KiDi

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Dennis Nana Dwamena, commonly known as KiDi, is a Ghanaian afrobeats singer-songwriter. He is a Lynx Entertainment artist well known for his hit tune “Odo.” The remix, which features Nigerian singers Mayorkun and Davido, has gained widespread airplay throughout Africa. KiDi also bagged the Artiste of the Year at the Ghana Music and 3Music Awards.

 

Davido

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David Adedeji Adeleke is a Nigerian singer, songwriter, and record producer of American origin. His music incorporates traditional African themes as well as worldwide popular pop. Davido has received several honors, including the South African Music Award Rest of Africa Artist in 2020.

 

Tiwa Savage

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Tiwa Savage (Tiwatope Savage) is a Nigerian singer, she was born in Isale Eko. She launched her music career five years later, playing backing vocals for musicians like as George Michael and Mary J. Blige. Savage got a publishing agreement with Sony/ATV Music Publishing in 2009 after appearing on “The X Factor UK” and graduating from Berklee College of Music.

 

Odunsi (The Engine)

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Odunsi the Engine is a rising talent in the Lagos alternative scene. Born Bowofoluwa Olufisayo Odunsi, he has gained international attention for his synth-pop-meets-R&B songs, which seamlessly incorporates afrobeats production. Odunsi established his own style with his debut album, Time of Our Lives (2016), and followed it up with his second album, rare, in 2018.

 

Mr Eazi

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Oluwatosin Ajibade, commonly known as Mr Eazi, is a Nigerian-born Ghanaian musician. He is a forefather of Banku music, which he characterizes as a synthesis of Ghanaian highlife and Nigerian chord progressions and rhythms.  Mr Eazi blow up after his verse on “My Life,” a song that gathered a lot of attention. He recently released on August 3rd, his new single “Personal Baby.”

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