Enjoy this list of top 30 tracks of 2015 brought to you by Africori, including a Spotify playlist for your listening pleasure!
1.Nathi – Nomvula
The ultimate break out kid of the year, Nathi smashed onto the scene in 2015 with his debut album “Buyelekhaya” which has since reached platinum status and just this week won iTunes’ World Music Album Of The Year. Lead single ‘Nomvula’ was just about everywhere on the airwaves across southern Africa. With it’s unique rhythm and intricate production, it’s a audial experience and catchy track you’ll find yourself humming this Christmas.
- Dj Switch – Way It Go ft Tumi, Youngsta & Nasty C
One of the most effective hip-hop collaborations this year came out of South Africa, featuring legendary artist Tumi dropping some heavy bars and newcomers Youngsta and Nasty C showing us just what they’re made of.
- Cassper Nyovest – Mama I Made It
Following the success of #FillUpTheDome in November, where Cassper succesfully sold out one of Jozi’s biggest stadia – the first time a local artist has achieved such a feat – he can indeed tell his Mama that he’s made it. This was the debut single from his second album “Refiloe” which recently reached platinum status.
- Sauti Sol- Live and Die in Afrika
Kenyan mega-group Sauti Sol recently released their third studio album which featured the single which featured the single and title track “Live and Die in Afrika”, an anthem that celebrates everything that makes Africa a colourful, unique and diverse continent. You’ll certainly enjoy the bass – heavy sounds that underpin the effortless rhythm this group are known for.
- Becca – Hw3
Following the success of her dance single “Steady” which featured hip-hop star Ice Prince, Becca released HW3, a new age love song sung in local Twi that had a cute and lovable accompanying music video. A big hit in Ghana.
- Nasty C – Juice Back ft Davido & Cassper Nyovest
New kid on the block, 18 year old Nasty C had our undivided attention when he released his breakout single “Juice Back”, so naturally everyone was hyped to hear the remix. Featuring hip-hop heavyweights Davido and Cassper Nyovest, the remix is already blowing up the charts for this impossibly young talent.
- Vusi Nova – Thandiwe
The South African R&B crooner returned to the music scene in 2015 with this chill inducing love song, ‘Thandiwe’. Keep an eye out next year for his new project with Nathi, ‘The Brothers Of Soul’.
- Madala Kunene – Draaihoek
The undisputed King of the Zulu Blues, Madala Kunene released his first album in a decade in 2015. Mellow, magical and moving, 1959 is a must have for any discerning world music fan. “Draaihoek” best displays his incredible guitar skills and storytelling ability.
- Vanessa Mdee – Never Ever
Fresh from her big win at the AFRIMMA, Vanessa released her enchanting single “Never Ever” and continued her domination of the African music scene. The video for this one racked up over 50 000 views on Youtube in the first two days.
- Lloyd Cele – Feeling So Good
Lloyd released his single “Feeling So Good”, a shamelessly fun pop/dance infused track that rocked South African radio airwaves and dancefloors alike. 2015 proved to be an amazing year for Lloyd who starred as Marvin Gaye in a full blown musical about the life of the soul legend.
- Diamond Platnumz – Number One ft Davido
Diamond Platnumz is without doubt Tanzania’s top contemporary artist. This year he boastfully continued his domination with ‘Number One’ featuring Davido. World beating collabs aside, Diamond also won big at this year’s MTV African Music Awards, The MTV Europe Music Awards as well as the Hip Hop Music Awards.
- Black Coffee – We Dance Again ft Nakhane Toure
“We Dance Again” is the electrifying debut single from DJ producer Black Coffee’s fith album “Pieces of Me”. The track reached number one on numerous national charts, featured in DJs sets around the world and sparked the #WeDanceAgain viral video challenge. Black Coffee has developed from a national hero to one of South Africa’s most renowned ambassadors.
- Mi Casa – Chocolat
The already established trio continued their domination of the South African dance scene with the release of “Chocolat”, the debut single from their third album “Home Sweet Home”. The track embraces women of every colour and definitely had every girl on the continent feeling loved and appreciated.
- AKA – Baddest ft Khuli Chana, Yanga & Burna Boy
AKA and Cassper Nyovest have continued battling it out this year for the title of South Africas number one rapper. The jury is still out on that but this number from AKA featuring Khuli Chana and Nigeria’s Burnaboy saw his collab game step up a considerable notch – after the huge international success of last year’s “All Eyes On Me”.
- Davido – Fans Mi ft Meek Mill
Cheeky chappy Davido released one of the year’s biggest trap tunes in “Fans Mi”, featuring Maybach Music Group artist Meek Mill. Check out the bass on this one, as well as the slightly naughty video! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3E6pwUO1b7s
- Wizkid – Expesnive Shit
Another huge year for Wizkid saw him make impressive steps to fully crossing over, through collaborations with the likes of Chris Brown, Skepta and Drake. He was also reported to have ditched his endorsement with telecom provider MTN and signed a 128 million Naira deal with GLO in June.
- Sarkodie – New Guy ft. Ace Hood
Sarkodie released his fourth studio album ‘Mary’ this year, named after his late grandmother who died in 2012. He has also been recognized and ranked 8th in Forbes, Channel O’s 2013 & 2015 list of the top 10 richest African Artists. ‘New Guy’ saw him make the step across the pond collaborating with Florida based rapper, Ace Hood.
- Burnaboy – Soke
Another one with a reputation that precedes him, Burnaboy certainly hasn’t slowed down in 2015. He’s set up his own record label, Spaceship Entertainment, recorded a bunch of singles with everyone from AKA and Khuli Chana to Wande Coal, and on this track enlisted up and coming producer Orbeat on the buttons.
- Vanessa Mdee – Nobody But Me (Feat K.O)
Nothing is getting in Vee Money’s way in 2015. She’s collected countless awards including best east african female at the AFRIMMA’s. This collabloration with South Africas K.O, of “Caracara” fame, was yet another high point for the Tanzanian pop princess this year.
- Becca – Steady (feat Ice Prince)
The first release on pan-African label Kolophonic, this is hands down one of our favourite releases of 2015. With its beautiful melodies and Becca’s distinctive crooning vocals, “Steady” really caught our ears with its international dance appeal. Watch the beautiful video here!
- Sean Tizzle – Eruku Se’ye Po
Sean Tizzle is undoubtedly one of Nigeria’s household names in the world of afrobeats and afropop. With a string of successful releases throughout 2015 it was hard to pin point which track to pick for this list, but “Eruku..” really stood out for us, with its ‘Ojuelegba-esque vibe.
- Sean Pages – Blind Remix (Feat Towdeemac, DJ Dimplez, L Tido, Kwesta, Kid X)
Joburg based rapper Sean Pages seemed to come out of knowwhere this year, dropping this Kwaito-indebted slow burner, featuring some of South Africa’s finest young rappers – including K.O. collaborator, Kid X.
- Navy Kenzo – Game (Feat Vanessa Mdee)
A superstar Tanzanian duo consiting of in demand producer Nahreel and vocalist Aika – and they’re also a couple! Navy Kenzo are some the freshest young talent around and on this track partnered with leading lady Vanessa Mdee for this groovy afro-dancehall number. Super catchy.
- Jux – Sisikii
One of the first releases of the year that popped up on our radar from another Tanzanian heart throb. Jux makes sleek R&B love songs and this is one of the best examples of his smooth sound. It also features Vanessa Mdee in the video – she’s been everywhere this year!
- Kwaw Kese – Yakubu (feat Sarkodie)
Though somewhat surrounded by controversy in the first half of the year, Kwaw Kese remains Ghana’s premier ragga emcee and announced his return to the game with this heavy hitting cut featuring his fellow countryman, the bossman Sarkodie.
- Wizkid – Ojuelegba (feat Drake & Skepta)
Wizkid, Drake & Skepta…. Need we say more. If anything could validate the afrobeats movement internationally, this would have to be it. https://soundcloud.com/skepta/ojuelegba-remix-ft-drake-skepta
- Philly Lutaaya – Born In Africa
Philly Bongoley Lutaaya, the Ugandan musician who is regarded as a national treasure due to him being the first prominent Ugandan to give a human face to HIV/AIDS. In 2004 Philly won the lifetime achievement award at the Pearl Of Africa Music awards. In Uganda Philly Bongoley Lutaaya day is on October 17th, which sees locals celebrate and remember him for his achievements and music.
- Kefee – Beautiful
The award winning Nigerian R&B and Gospel singer sadly passed away last year in Los Angeles, but this truly beautiful track released after her passing celebrates her career and life.
- Wande Coal – Ashimapeyin
A bit of a cheeky one this. Lagos based Wande Coal re-released last year’s ‘Wanted’ album again this year – with just a couple of extra bonus tracks – but it’s a marketing maneuvre that’s definitely paid off. Including ‘Ashemapeyin’ and ‘Same Sh*t (ft AKA), it nonetheless features some of the biggest afrobeats hits in recent years.
- Orlando Julius – Back To My Roots
Legendary Nigerian saxophonist and pioneer of afro soul, afrobeat and afrofunk, Orlando Julius has stepped up his game in 2015 by venturing out on his first batch of US dates in over a decade. This funky number – an OJ classic – was re-released back in January as part of a new greatest hits compilation, titled “Back To My Roots”.
Africori is a digital music solutions company that specialises in African music, the services they provide are distribution, licensing and marketing. Africori are purveyors in African music with offices in London, Johannesburg and representatives in Nigeria, Tanzania, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Uganda, Malawi and Rwanda. Africori is the leading digital music company for artists and labels in Africa and they have a broad range of artists spanning across multiple genres including older legends Philly Lutaaya, Orlando Julius as well as the new stars, such as Wizkid, Sean Tizzle, Vector, Vanessa Mdee, Becca, and double platinum artist Nathi. http://africori.com