From its beginning to the very end, the year 2019 saw a perfect mixture of ‘The Good, Bad and Ugly’ within the Afrobeats sphere and beyond. Well, gone are the days when abnormality was seen as an issue, especially in a phase where being crazy has become a major selling point
With this, an eruption of new artistes stormed the year with various shades of craziness in terms of video releases, wonder working lyrics and the general hot vibes that came with their deliveries, as individuals. Almost overshadowing the ‘veterans’ of the industry, artistes like Naira Marley, Zlatan, Joeboy, Fireboy DML, Rema, Wurld, TEMS and others left burning footprints on the shores of the Nigerian music industry.
Beyonce’s Lion King: The Gift Album was a huge plus to the exceptional tingly of the year, especially with features from Wizkid, Tiwa Savage, Yemi Alade, Tekno, Mr. Eazi and many other great African artistes.
2019 was a massive year for Burna Boy thriving as an African Giant, winning big in all major awards across the continent and finally bagging a nominee spot in the Grammies.
Fast forward to the 2019 Detty December groove! Among all the lit back to back music concerts held within the month, the Livespot X Festival with Cardi B is one that blew the beauty, culture and music of Africa to its loudest pitch. Cardi B’s continuous positive feedback after her visit to Ghana, and most especially Nigeria directly and indirectly changed the narrative, making the world have a better feel of the continent.
Indeed, the year 2019 is one that led to major breakthroughs in the Afrobeats industry, with this, although we intended to make it just 10 but with the overflow of top hits within the year, below are top 15 songs that rocked the airwaves in no particular order:
Just when it felt like we weren’t hearing ‘anything’ from the Afro-diva, her hit single was released, breaking the silence and flooding top music charts with its deep lyrical content accompanied by that smooth and steady Fela kind of vibes to match. Tiwa Savage offered a song that came in timely as an Ode to Nigeria @ 59. If you haven’t done so already, hurry now to have a taste of our Music Review on this didactic piece- Here
He’s no doubt one of those lit indigenous rappers that will effortlessly make you fall in love with the Yoruba language, regardless of all the tribal boundaries and ethnic differences. Widely known as the King of the Street. However, this position was contended for like never before, as more and more street shakers emerged within the year. In all, the song ‘Oil and Gas’ is definitely one of the key instruments Baddo used to retain his crown in the midst of what almost seemed like an overthrow. This jamzz here will definitely tick as part of the make up for the life of the party, in the year 2019.
2019 was indeed a year when Afrobeats flourished beyond the shores of Africa to the International World. ‘Skeletun’ here was one song that contributed to this major breakthrough of the African story. Becoming the top choice of countless dance videos within and outside Nigeria, the song is one that has thrived from its release till date. Tekno on the other hand won more and more hearts, including that of one of America’s top singer and songwriter, Billie Eilish as she validated this during an interview, when asked about who her favorite artiste was
“My Favorite artiste is Tekno.
There isn’t one song that I don’t like that he puts out.
Every single song that man puts out; I love.
Shouldn’t that count as your favorite artiste?
As an artiste that puts out music that you only like?”- Billie Eilish
‘Up To Something’- Mayorkun
This tops as one of the few songs of 2019, beautifully crafted with edible contents. A song that celebrates originality and natural beauty above all the frivolities of the society. With a video celebrating woman of all shades and colors. Little wonder here at Afrobeats 360 our music review revealed the song as a ‘Didactic Masterpiece To Women’. To gulp our full review of the song, kindly click – Here
For the year 2019, this song would win the award of introducing the ‘dance of the year’. The ‘legwork dance’ that came with the song Zanku, is one that thrived in almost every other song by other artistes throughout the year. Like the times of Shaku shaku and the likes, legwork became the dance of the season, even beyond Africa. Indeed, Zlatan got himself a throne in the heart of many, within just a short time of ‘storming the yard’.
This is one of those goosebumps giving songs of 2019, capable of making a single lady fall in love with that imaginary prince charming. Wedding visuals are always a beautiful display in any setting, and the video of this song didn’t spare the giftedness that comes with this view. From the lyrics of the song to the very addictive melodies that came with it, all superb. Perruzi killed it here, no doubt!
‘Rora’- Reekado Banks
There are certain songs that come with a kind of sweet and soft tempo, quite addictive. This song here is one that stirs some inexplicable emotional vibes within. With a video shot best described as lovely! – “not too simple” “not too complex” Beautiful scenes of a brown skin girl in all her glory and majesty is displayed and, just everything about this song makes it a great blend of Reeky baby’s vocal and visual creativity. Finally, the ace evident in the guitar arts within the melody of the song, killed it all!!
What’s a 2019 music review without a mention of the song Jealous! This song literally set millions of hearts on fire, attracting more and more fans to keep a closer eye on this new star ‘causing trouble’. From top music charts to ringtones, wedding tunes, love videos and a host of others, the song met all in its versatility. Saying the song was a hit is an understatement…
Oh baby am getting jealous
Don’t wanna see you with anybody o
Am getting jealous already o
Am getting jealous Don’t wanna see you with anybody o
Am getting jealous already o
One thing African artistes do not hesitate to do these days is to brag about our melanin girls and beauty, Fireboy did not just do that here, but was literally crazy about the Ghana melanin here, a sweet bitter experience quite relatable by many. Fireboy is one of the few with not just the voice, but also soul touching content to go. Our review on his recent firebrand debut album will give you a glimpse high we see this new glow- Click here to read all on Fireboy’s Albun Review
One of those 2019 songs that will steal your heart and still capture your repeat button. Generally, all Teni’s hit songs are always evergreen, from ‘Case’ to ‘Uyo Meyo’, Teni has her way of making you love her vibes effortlessly. In the video of this particular song, ‘Power Rangers’, firstly she took us down the memory lane of childhood days with just the song title alone. Secondly, she gave us a taste of the queen she is, between being a tomboy, as she surprisingly wore a beautiful flowing gown, giving a Cinderella look, as she sang for her Superman. The song in all softness, humor and creativity makes it unto the league of 2019 songs of songs. We should do a detailed Feature story on this music goddess who flows in all uniqueness and originality. Watch out for this here soonest!
‘Mafo’- Naira Marley
He spelt the word- WILD in capital letters throughout the year 2019, and the video in this song increased the volume of this wildness to the highest volume. Large section of the street fans began to worship this latest Tiger in the Afrobeats jungle, one who is seemingly fearless and speaks the language of rebellion fluently. Songs like ‘Am I A Yahoo Boy’ and ‘Soapy’ also became a hit on almost every playlist of the year. Now away from the streets to almost every sphere within the Nigerian entertainment fanbase, you find a Marlain! A community gradually building up by the day for different reasons peculiar to individuals of all backgrounds. Click here to read up our Cover Story on the Rise of the Marlian Empire
Omo make I manya you
Omalicha kan’ye wu eh oo
I go manya you
Omalicha kan’ye wu eh
Paragaran gi che chuan
Whether the lyrics were understood or not, the song went viral in the year 2019, becoming a national anthem on the lips of millions of Afrobeats lovers and a major jamzz played by DJs from all corners. Simplicity is the beauty of the song video, as Rema and his ‘teenage’ friends flowed in the innocence of the ages in display. Many thought this particular song was by Wizkid initially, Rema’s uniqueness and style began to register in the heads of fans and lovers, creating a niche for himself in a field quite dominated before his arrival. Rema is no doubt an artiste that rocked the year 2019 to the fullest. Although not on our list, his song ‘Iron Man’ made it to the 2019 Summer playlist of the Icon, Barrack Obama. Afrobeats to the world! Cheers!!
You know that song you can’t just escape loving. The type with a video that may leave you grinning unconsciously till you get back from that world of fantasies. Joeboy and the beautiful lady used in the video made a priceless pair. Little wonder the video as the type you see on all major channels at short intervals.
Special type of feeling that I feel when I’m with you
O n du n Mo mi anytime wey I dey with you
I want your heart and soul and your own body too
I can’t let you go I’m beginning to begin to fall in love
Joeboy is definitely one of those young artists to lookout for!
Speaking about one of the non stop thriving Kings of Afrobeats, the name Wizkid must ring a bell, and the song Joro screamed the name louder in the year 2019. Wizkid has obviously grown to become one of those artistes who do not need to release countless songs in a year to stay afloat. Breaking more grounds even in the International sphere, the song Joro with its ‘Fela like’ beat made it into the smooth groove hits of the last decade. The video was one that said so much with little. From the flashing red light on the model’s face to the excitement it stirred within her. This and more displayed visuals quite intriguing and a little outside the box of the norms. From the time he came to limelight till date, Wizkid has soared through his journey, and the year 2019 wasn’t an exception, especially with his big win at the BET Soul Train Awards. Click here to read our Cover Story on this win.
From its solo part to the chorus, you’ll hear the crowd screaming the lyrics of this song at the top of their voices. The songs ‘Ye’, ‘Dangote’ and a host of others by Giant, Oluwaburna, are not left in the heavy vibes he brings to any show. Aside also being amongst the top 2019 songs of Barrack Obama, the song ‘Anybody’ is one relatable by anybody, as it deals with a host of societal issues and the boomerang of life. With the deep richness encased within his lyrics and the calmness with a spark of energy that accompanies his sound, here at Afrobeats 360 we refer to Burna Boy as the ‘Legend with Fire and Ice’. Click here to read the full piece on this cover story.
‘Risky’- Davido Ft. Popcaan
And when the year 2019 was almost coming to an end, vibes in Nigerian and Jamaican flavor was served hot in the rather already boiling Afrobeats atmosphere.
Who be this kid
Pour the whiskey
But odikwa risky
Those are some warning lines there, as Davido and Popcaan go all out to ‘risk’ their lives for girl who really has zero interest in both parties. Funny and entertaining one there, and it’s also commendable to see that the video flows with the lyrics of the song, as this is not the evident in some case. In all the year 2019 was actually ‘a good time’ for Davido, his collab with Chris Brown and a many other, his engagement with Chioma, the birth of his first son and the release of his third studio album. Our Cover story on the Risky lord will give you more highlight on his life thus far. Click here to read all in full details.
In all, most of the best songs of 2019 weren’t necessarily the ones with the fastest beats, but the most relatable in terms of content, style, witness, and general creativity.
We look forward even more freshness in the world of Afrobeats this 2020
From all of us at Afrobeats 360
We Wish You A Most Blissful New Decade