Nothing screams Afrobeats like Nigeria!

Blaq Jerzee a multi-gifted and versatile Nigerian tune creator — who works across a variety of chanted genres, including Pop and Afro Pop — lives up to asseveration of how the Afrobeats genre has advanced significantly.

Scathing a skeptical dunk on the backwash of a doubtless cosmopolitan dominance of Afrobeats is a suicidal suppose; which besides helter-skelter derailing, has in every last likelihood woozy evaporated incredibly awkward also-rans calls — with nought hypothesis to whiff at.

So sinewy, it may never be broken, this plug-and-play genre has — at its prime quantity — hit a nip-and-tuck top geared stride!

The hunger in her proving to be a positive tactical maneuver forward; before Nigerian jams became touristy transnational, veteran radio hostess and A&R (Artists and Repertoire) consultant — Ife Ajagbe — had forever been a proponent for the vastly populated West African country’s independent artists. Coaching them on ‘Sunday-go-to-meeting’ practices; paying attention to what it takes to get their work conspicuously featured on germane media platforms.

Riding on Afrobeats’ warranted planetary phenomenon, she is set to further amplify artists’ voices, seeing to it that the livelong universe gets to take heed to their ditties. Hardly out of sync, the tail end of the 2023 period of time got Symphonic Distribution — one of the major independent auditory communication distribution and marketing establishments in the industry, with vestige in major tonal pattern markets crosswise the United States of America and intercontinental — naming Ajagbe as Head of Operations for Symphonic West Africa.

Guided home, her occupation involves taking care of the interests of the troupe’s existing clients and partners in the West African region, while on-boarding fresh-cut harmonic talents. 

“Symphonic is literally for everybody because the real aim is to make artists in Nigeria and other parts of West Africa feel cared for beyond just digital music distribution. The organisation has been in business since 2006. So, this is a company that knows its onions when it comes to digital music distribution, sync licensing, rights management, funding and a host of other services,” Ajagbe said.

Nothing holding the institution back; although there are galore digital berceuse dispersion services that serve the West African market, Symphonic sets itself asunder in the areas of value and efficiency. The platform is aware that umpteen independent artists have a pocket-sized budget for the shelling out and hyping of their canons.

Involved every time, for this rational motive, Symphonic assists artists mete out an unlimited number of songs to 200+ streaming sites at just $19.99 per 12-month. Of great value, the procedure of artists’ opuses going live in euphony stores takes less than 10 days.

“Afrobeats is the new crude oil, and it is important to nurture the sources of this promising product. As part of our commitment to artists’ development, Symphonic West Africa plans to hold regular training, master classes, and other avenues for artists to learn valuable skill sets in their journey through the music business,” Ajagbe said.

And so, not shirking away from broadloom fast-flying, Blaq Jerzee a multi-gifted and versatile Nigerian tune creator — who works across a variety of chanted genres, including Pop and Afro Pop — lives up to asseveration of how the Afrobeats genre has advanced significantly.

Illustrious and fair-haired for bringing forth bubbly beats for sonic sensation maestros like Mr Eazi, Wizkid (‘Blow’/‘Fever’), Tiwa Savage’s ‘Attention’, Larry Gaga (‘Low’), as well as Iyanya’s ‘Gift’ with sound producer Don Jazzy; the fall of the 2023 period would witness the Lagos-based producer — hatching a hell dust single titled ‘Little Issues’. The collaboration features fellow Nigerian anthem godhead Skiibii; who struck an aureate chord on the remix to the banger ‘Baddest Boy’ aboard Davido — credited for ballyhooing Afrobeats international.

D’Banj having played a schrittmacher life-or-death role in spearheading the flight of Afrobeats to the mainstream; Olamide has been pivotal to the creative and commercial prosperity of various Afrobeats stars.

When Wizkid joined forces with Canadian rapper and singer Drake on the number ‘Come Closer’, it eventuated a peripheral yet ideal no-brainer tenure for the latter treasured African genre. The ‘Ojuelegba’ pitch lord’s quislingism with Canadian singer and pop icon Justin Bieber on the knightly 2020 remix version of the track — ‘Essence’ — alongside Tems (who co-wrote the song ‘Lift Me Up’ by Barbadian singer composer, businesswoman, as well as actress Rihanna and also featured on ‘Fountains’ by Drake), once again pushed Afrobeats high as ever!

Manque, ‘Amapiano’ hit maker Asake is stretching further than a mere pipe dream. Tapping American Rhythm and Blues vocalist and songwriter H.E.R on the remix to his monster birdcall — ‘Lonely At The Top’ (2023) — pertly polishes up the sparkling countenance of Afrobeats.

In-fact, Chukwuka Ekweani, famed on-stage as CKay — has been devising history, sure as shooting fetching inspiration from his knack for foaling chart topping compositions on the bounce. Earnestly levitating Afrobeats, his supranational bona fide thunder singable perception ‘Love Nwantiti’, not only earned platinum/multi-platinum status in five countries — including the United States, India, and Italy; the piece of tattle also secured gold certifications in the UK, Australia, South Africa, and New Zealand.

CKay’s unprecedented good fortune on the UK Singles Chart, holding on to a top 5 position for four sequential weeks, asterisked him as the first African artist in half a century to bring home the bacon with such a milestone! He has reportedly been named the best-selling African artiste in the United States of America after ‘Love Nwantiti’ attained over 1.6 million dollars last 12-month — which is the largest amount ever accomplished by an African artiste.

On the far side of dreamland, ‘Emiliana’ amassed over 340 million streams worldwide. The lullaby claimed the summit on the UK Afrobeats Chart, catapulted to position 2 on Shazam Top 200 (Afrobeats), and secured the top spot in six countries on Apple Music. September 23, 2022 — distinctly pronouncing the unveiling of CKay’s debut album ‘Sad Romance’; this full-bodied blues creation has since wreaked over 380 million streams globally, and counting.

Hiving away over 3.5 billion streams to his repute, in any case cock-a-hoop as the most streamed artist of the year, with the “most Shazam-ed song in the world”, being the first African artist with two tracks simultaneously on the Global Spotify Top 30 — last September saw the ‘Container’ and ‘Capture My Soul’ record Einstein, also become the first African artist to be the face of a Ralph Lauren fragrance franchise.

Resetting standards in the wake of piling up over 15 billion graphical views on video-focused social networking service — Tik Tok; CKay’s tie-up with ‘The New Polo Oud’, exemplifies Ralph Lauren’s fidelity to multifariousness and representation, which it does by linking cultures through the aromatic language — therewith, underpinning Afrobeats’ wide appeal and sonority on Earth.

CKay — last November — scored a coveted nomination at the 66th Grammy Awards; tailing the footsteps of the ‘Bank On It’ and ‘For My Hand’ (with English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran) gem supreme being Burner Boy, who has for the past years extraordinarily played up Afrobeats’ subtle yet puissance evolution.

It is a recognition of CKay’s outstanding contributions to American singer, songwriter, rapper, and actress Janelle Monáe’s ceiling knocking ballad sculpt known as ‘The Age of Pleasure’. Placing the ‘in your face’ offering in contention for the prestigious Album of the Year accolade.

‘Know Better’ the standout piece of auditory sensation on the project, highlights CKay’s mountain peak endowment. It features him aboard Seun Kuti (the youngest son of Nigerian Afrobeats pioneer Fela Kuti) and Egypt 80 — his father’s former band. A toothsome delivery of a captivating blend of Afrobeats, Rhythm & Blues, and Highlife — underscoring the West African artists’ multinational impact. Thereupon, foreshadowing even greater sway in store for the heavy-duty African genre!

  • BIOGRAPHY: Grant Moyo is a prolific writer, innovative media personality, entrepreneur and a creative artist who is passionate about using his creative mind for the betterment of society.
  • Follow him on X: @TotemGrant

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